Gambling in Canada.

Essay by jim80University, Bachelor'sA+, November 2003

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Gambling is as old as human history. Gambling was a popular pastime in North America long before there was ever a United States. Playing cards and dice were brought over by both the British and the Dutch. By the end of the 17th century, just about every countryseat in colonial America had a lottery wheel. Cockfighting flourished throughout the countries, especially in the South (Ortiz 4). Gambling in the past was done mainly for social and cultural integration and interaction. But with the heavy commercialization of gambling over the last few decades our motivation to gamble has become more about avoidance or meeting some other psychological need. From a virtually non-existent gambling industry in the 1980's, to the opening of the first commercial casino in Winnipeg in 1984, the Canadian public is now exposed to nationwide gambling that includes: 50 permanent casinos, 44 permanent horse race tracks, 20,000 annual bingo events and 60,000 video lottery terminals and slot machines.

Canada has experienced a widespread expansion of gambling in the past 10 years. From casinos to scratch-and-win discount cards at your local grocery store, it's easier to gamble today than ever before.

Not everyone who goes to a casino is labeled as a gambler and not everyone at a casino is said to have problems because of gambling. Although, there is a chance that people seen at a casino will turn up there again and again, eventually turning into a gambler. Gamblers can be placed along a series that ranges from no problems at one end to "pathological" at the other. In between are varying degrees of addictive behavior. Problem gambling is a term used to cover all patterns of gambling behavior that compromise, disrupt, or damage personal, family, or vocational pursuits. Pathological gambling is described as a continuous or periodic...