L.A. Times supports online gaming in editorial

On June 9, the L.A. Times published an editorial endorsing the legalization of online gambling. In the article, the Times staff analyzed the current legislation making its way through Congress to ban online gambling and says "Congress should be clarifying the law in the opposite direction."

The Times points out the same arguments that many online gambling advocates have made - legalization would be a better way to regulate the online gambling industry as opposed to banning it altogether.

According to the editorial, legalization would be the best way to ensure the rules are being followed in regards to gambling by minors, setting up programs to identify problem gamblers, and making sure the operations are following honest and respectable business practices.

"Wouldn't it be preferable to have bettors deal with the sports book at Caesars Palace or the MGM Grand - heavily regulated Las Vegas casinos that are part of publicly traded companies - rather than with some fly-by-night offshore player?" the Times asks.

They also point out that legalization would allow for taxation of the business and for the government to change its hypocritical stance on the gambling issue.

Currently the laws allow for certain forms of gambling, such as state lotteries, but not other forms. Also, the two bills in Congress, H.R. 4777, the Internet Gambling Prohibition Act, and H.R. 4411, the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2005, that would ban online gambling, still allow for betting on horse racing online.

As they conclude their argument, the Times sums it up by saying "Moralistic members of Congress should not be allowed to thwart online freedoms."

The full editorial can be read at www.latimes.com/news/opinion.

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