THE BLOG

Teeing Off: It's a Gamble

08/23/2007 10:22 am ET | Updated Nov 17, 2011

I've never gambled in the classic sense. Never pulled the arm of a slot machine, don't know how Black Jack works, wouldn't be caught dead on Poker Tour and can't be bothered to put a dollar on black 47. I don't understand the compulsion to gamble, why anyone would take their hard-earned -- or whatever way their money comes to them -- and hand it over to a stranger.

There are literally millions of people in America who do not share my view and spend hundreds of hours and millions of dollars gambling in casinos and online like never before. I remember when gambling was something only tough guys did in movies but now it seems that millions of Americans are willfully gambling away their earnings, thus insuring them a broke-ass future. Gambling has become a mainstream pastime. It went from the casinos to seemingly everywhere else and the demographic has widened and now there's children with gambling debt.

What is the attraction of throwing your money away? Why are so many college students getting addicted to online gambling? Shouldn't they be studying? Whose money are they gambling with? What amazes me is that people can't wait to divest themselves of their earnings. Casinos don't even have to try, people are willing to pay to lose their money! In Las Vegas, they can't build hotels fast enough to stem the flow of incoming suckers. Why are people so eager to go into debt? I don't get it. Perhaps I spent too many years working for minimum wage and being broke to throw it away in a few minutes. The final irony of America might be that the freedom that was so hard-won might be the very thing that is the country's undoing, one hand at a time. Do you feel lucky? Well, do ya?!