The bet is money. The aim is money. The loser parts with money. The winner gets money. Money is all there is. Money is the subject and the object. Money is the means and the end. This is gambling. This can neither be an entertainment or a pastime. This cannot be a virtue but a vice. And this is what both legal and illegal gambling are all about.
The facts as they now stand: Gambling has the blessing of the highest office in the land. It has the patronage of many persons in power and influence. It makes people in authority blind and dumb.
No wonder then that gambling is fast becoming a veritable industry in the country. It is emerging as a legitimate business just like other enterprises of honest sweat and hard toil. What the country loses in terms of capital investments, availability of work, safety of communities, economic progress and stability, it envisions of gaining through gambling.
The Philippines has enough official drug lords, public crime lords, professional prostitution lords. Now, it is not contented with having only local gambling lords. It is now even importing more notorious, more vicious and more dangerous gambling lords.
The well proven and known truth is that the vice of gambling breeds other vices: graft and corruption in public offices and private companies. Violence against life and limbs. Dishonesty and deceit.
Gambling leads to addiction which devours precious time and well earned money, negates the value of hard work and foments the mentality of luck and chance. It has already destroyed many families and homes, has pitifully wasted the present and future of many individuals—the gambling addicts and their victims alike.
What a dubious distinction for the Philippines to become the gambling Metropolis of Asia!
13 October 1999