To the Editor:
After spending much of my life attending trade shows in places like Las Vegas, Atlantic City, and elsewhere, I have a very clear picture of just what casinos bring to an area and, trust me, it has no redeemable value to society. Seriously, does anyone honestly believe these money motivated people give a damn about preserving Island life and culture. Can you imagine Beetlebung Corner with massive traffic and large tourist buses trucking people from boats at Vineyard Haven and Oak Bluffs back and forth across the Island. Not to mention the increase in crime from massive influx of degenerate, broke and desperate gamblers, hookers, drug dealers and users, thieves, muggers, and who knows what else. Let them into our neighborhoods, schoolyards and businesses, and in short order they will destroy life here as we know it.
We all know the soft approach the tribe and National Indian Gaming Commission (NIGC) will take going in, and their pitch about tax revenues and bolstering business development, but don’t be fooled or deceived. The studies show that the cost impact to communities that embrace gambling is significant — widening of roads, additional police, firemen, and EMT services to field the overwhelming increase in demands from population explosion and with many other hidden costs, we will have a serious problem on town budgets. And to those in towns other than Aquinnah who think this will not affect them, better think again, my friends, for gambling and casinos have far reaching effects, especially on an Island like M.V.
Roll the dice, Islanders, and take the chance of selling down the river all those who came before you to preserve and protect this special place — if so, I will not be around to see its demise.
Chilmark and Lothian, Maryland