GAMBLING A British Perspective
C. P. SEAGER
GAMBLING in Britain has been demonstrated to be a nationwide activity amongst the adult population and probably a considerable proportion of the younger generation. Arguments concerning an appropriate attitude have ranged between two opposing views. Some see gambling as a normal, pleasurable pastime offering excitement, interest, and relief of boredom to offset the dull tedium of the workaday world. It is recognised that people are entitled to choose their patterns of behaviour and that it would be wrong for Society as a whole, through its legislative machinery, to attempt to control, define, or limit those activities that are selected for relief, provided they do not cause undue harm to other people. Furthermore, the gambling industry provides employment to a wide range of individuals extending from the jockeys, book makers, racehorse owners, and the casino proprietors on the one hand, through to the football pool coupon salesmen, the croupiers, and those temporarily employed to remove garbage from the racecourse on the other. Others with a vested interest in gambling include the Government, which derives income from taxation and more specifically, promotes its own gambling services through the totalizator and Premium Bonds; it is also contemplating a National Lottery. Many churches and other charitable institutions also depend on lotteries for at least part of their income.
The contrary argument points a moral finger at the encouragement of achieving financial success without industry and the search for a solution to financial problems by a windfall from Destiny rather than the application of effort, perseverance,