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Encyclopedia of Crime and Punishment

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Encyclopedia of Crime and Punishment

David Levinson

Pub. date: 2002 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI:http://dx.doi.org/10.4135/9781412950664 | Print ISBN: 9780761922582 | Online ISBN: 9781412950664 | Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.

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Gambling

Barry Spunt

Nevada, which legalized casino gambling in 1931, was the only state to allow this form of recreation until the first of the Atlantic City, New Jersey, casinos opened in 1978. Although on-track wagering on horse races was largely accepted across the United States, legalization of other forms of gambling proceeded at a slow pace, because the general public regarded most forms of gambling as an unacceptable or even quasicriminal activity. A majority of citizens believed that proliferation of legal gambling sites would cause a nationwide crime wave. Even state lotteries, a form of wagering currently considered to be routine and harmless, did not exist until New Hampshire, seeking to improve its cash flow, initiated a lottery in 1964. Other states gradually followed suit, and eventually, took the next step in legalization of gambling by introducing off-track betting on horse races. With this recent history, the rapid evolution of legalized gambling ...

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