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Anti-Gambling Group: Lotteries Can be Addictive

22 July 2002

TENNESEE -- As reported by the Rocky Mountain News: "If you think lotteries are harmless fun, then learn these facts, some of which are from the Gambling Free Tennessee Alliance (GFTA):

"Between a quarter and a third of 15- to 18-year-olds in Minnesota, Louisiana, Texas and Connecticut have bought lottery tickets. A Connecticut study found that one in 10 high school students were compulsive gamblers, mainly via lotteries.

"Forty-three percent of callers to the 1-800-GAMBLER national hot line cited problems with lottery gambling.

"To appreciate how remote lottery odds of 1-in-80-million are, consider that dinosaurs roamed the Earth 80 million years ago. The population of Florida, New York, California and Illinois, combined, is about 80 million.

"…The GFTA notes: `If a person bought 100 $1 lottery tickets every week for his entire adult life from age 18 to 75, that $296,400 investment will still only give him less than 1 chance in 100 of hitting the jackpot.'

"…In 1996, Money magazine revealed that, on average, lottery states collect more in taxes and spend less on their schools than non-lottery states. In fact, since 1990, per-capita taxes in lottery states had risen more than three times as fast as in non-lottery states…"

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