I’ve got to be honest about my feelings toward the Tennessee State Lottery, as well as any other lottery program (as if you haven’t figured this out with my other posts on the topic), – it gets on my nerves!
The lottery program preys on the poor. It helps to keep the poor right where they are in life, financially speaking. In fact, the state of Tennessee’s lottery program has made so much money off losers…I mean players, the state has decided to begin a program that will pay for the first two years of a student’s higher-education at any state community or technical college…something that I’m sure the college boards were ecstatic about.
Now, am I against people getting a chance to get an education that could help to prepare them for a good, and hopefully honest, job? Not at all! What I’m against is the veracious appetite of the lottery program and who it targets. Let me explain to you what I mean in case you don’t already get it.
The latest State Lottery commercial that’s been hitting the radio airwaves features a man thanking all of the people standing in line in front of him who didn’t buy the “winning ticket” for a particular lottery game. In other words the commercial is trying to tempt people who don’t play at all, or at least who don’t play often enough in the lottery’s eyes, to start buying a ticket more often by making them think that they would’ve won if they would’ve only bought that ticket…because “the next ticket” is always going to be the winner in the mind of the player, right? The commercial goes on to end by reminding people that it only takes a dollar or two to win thousands.
Here’s my problem with that commercial, and ultimately the lottery program: one, the “winner” is thanking the wrong person – he should be thanking all the losers who gave up their money to stand in line to play a “game” with odds stacked against them; and two, the average lottery player doesn’t spend a dollar or two – they end up spending ten or twelve every other day, or whenever they get their check from their employee or from the government…after all, the lottery’s huge surplus of money is coming from somewhere and I doubt it’s coming from the employees of the lottery program.
So if you’re a lottery player in the state of Tennessee and you win your scratch-off game, don’t thank me because a single dollar of your winnings didn’t come from my pocket – thank the player standing in line in front of you who bought losing ticket after losing ticket after loosing ticket….for every one or two players to win it takes thousands of players who lose.