As we’ve seen many times before, the Alabama legislature will once again visit the idea of a state lottery.

The Associated Press reports Republican Rep. Steve Clouse of Ozark plans to introduce a lottery bill in this year’s legislative session, with the proceeds to benefit the state’s pre-K program as well as scholarships for college.

Our lawmakers have presented numerous arguments against having a lottery, most of them stemming from moral compasses.  So, let’s have a quick discussion on the issues.

It’s been said that a lottery is gambling, and we don’t want state residents who are often already poverty stricken to develop hazardous habits.

Well, those who are going to play are going to play ANYWAY, and spending a few dollars each week on a chance at winning millions is much better than shoving hundreds or even thousands into a machine for a chance at thousands. TRUE gamblers find a way!  They find rides with oxygen tanks intact if need be.

It is said that the interests of some entities are being protected.  These entities are said to fund the political campaigns of many.  Now, these politicians can probably afford to spend an abundance on their children’s education while prohibiting the funding for others.

And let’s face it, putting aside those who travel to other states for the sole purpose of playing the lottery, who among us has not traveled and found ourselves getting gas or snacks and adding a few bucks for a scratch off or other lottery ticket? Isn’t it slightly hypocritical to fund programs in other states while ours go lacking?

We are among the weakest education, the poorest health care, the worst economy, and the weakest crime and corrections system in the country.  Even if ALL of the money from a lottery doesn’t go towards education, certainly there are other areas that could benefit from the funding without raising taxes in a state where the median income is $26,500. Source.

All of that sounds logical, right?  You want to know why the lottery hasn't passed in Alabama before? Well, here's where it gets tricky.

Lawmakers often insert certain language into proposed bills that goes unread by the vast majority.  These pieces often include measures that disproportionately affect some more than others in negative way.  So, those who actually have our best interest at heart either take the time to read everything that is written, or they reject the measure because it was not presented timely enough to have proper review.

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