The recent op-ed “The House Loses” by Sam Skolnik relies on faulty information to inaccurately and unfairly depict the impact of the gaming industry in communities across the country
In truth, many peer-reviewed studies have found no connection between casinos and the social problems Mr. Skolnik attributes to the influence of gaming. The referenced studies by Earl Grinols, a noted gambling opponent, have long been discredited by many of his peers. In fact, nearly all of his claims about gaming were contradicted by the congressionally chartered National Gambling Impact Study Commission.
For many years, Iowans were asked to vote every eight years on a referendum to continue allowing gaming in their area. Each time voters overwhelmingly approved the measure. If casinos were responsible for bringing crime and corruption to communities, Iowa’s casinos would have closed long ago.
Finally, the increase in pathological gambling that Mr. Skolnik writes about simply isn’t true. Multiple research reports have confirmed the prevalence rate of pathological gambling has held steady at approximately 1 percent of the adult population for more than 30 years, despite the widespread growth of casino gambling.
Frank J. Fahrenkopf, Jr.
President and CEO
American Gaming Association