Boy, I Feel Bad for My Bookie: The Federal Ban on Sports Gambling is Officially Lifted

Yesterday, the Supreme Court ruled 6-3 that federally banning sports gambling is unconstitutional and should be left upon the states to decide whether or not they will allow their residents to gamble on sporting events.

The ban had been in effect for over 25 years when the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 was passed, which made gambling on sporting events illegal on the federal level. The law did exclude a few states and licensed sports books in Las Vegas.


Back in 1991, the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Patents, Copyrights and Trademarks started the conversation when they had public hearing on sports gambling. That’s when then NBA commissioner David Stern spoke and stated that he and others were not in favor of state to state sports betting.

Fast forward to today and we are back to square one. Several states already have it on their agenda to legalize sports gambling, including New Jersey and New York. Other states would also like to add that to the docket, but their governments are already out of session and wouldn’t be able to pass anything until 2019.

I just want to start out by saying that this move is only good for the government and not so much for the people. There’s not going to be more people betting on sports than there already are –it is kind of like the legalization of marijuana. Either you’re a smoker or your not. Either you want action on the late game to try to get your money back from the day or you have no idea what that means.

The government needs to make illegal things that people do legal so that they can capitalize on such and make a profit off it. The fact that they are making something legal that a lot of people already do seems like a win win right? Wrong!

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They are taking money out of hard working bookies pockets that put their kids through college via people on tilt and chasing that money line. Bookies have been adding to the dramatic affect of sports in places where action is illegal.

If you’re not into sports or you think that’s a false statement, do me a favor and throw $100 on a game. Any game. Guess what? That $100 will give you a ride and will keep you on the edge of your seat. That’s what you’re local bookie provides your degenerate friends –excitement.

On the flip side, there’s also a risk to being a bookie. One game could make you go belly up and you run the risk of going to jail on a daily basis. They’re just providing a service that people want and some need. I say we raise or glasses to these entrepreneurs who put their lives on the line to provide a service. They’re like bootleggers during prohibition.


Photo: Seattle Times

I think that everyone should be in a situation at least once where they make a bet through a sketchy bookie. It adds character and there is no bullshit.

I had a guy where the process was to  call into a number, get an account number then tell him what I wanted. It was like ordering drugs on the black market, but in reality it was taking the Dolphins to only lose by 10 or less points to the Patriots.

Also, bookies would provide loans to their customers. I don’t think that states are going to do that. I can’t get a $500 credit for a few parlays from Cuomo’s office.

So I just wanted to pay homage to one of the great American heroes; the bookie.

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