Our state leaders are stammering and sputtering as they search their intellect to come up with pain-free ideas to balance the state budget. Wake up, everybody. It is time for common sense to overrule foolishness and political prostitution. People are being taxed to the brink of asphyxiation, while millions in potential tax revenue is being overlooked in two major areas.
One of them is the legalization of marijuana. It's no worse for the body than alcohol (probably not as bad), cigarettes, sugar, salt and many of the drugs approved by the FDA with numerous side effects. Studies have proven that it's medicinally beneficial for several illnesses.
The other area is video poker. While reading Chris Fitzsimon's column in the Feb. 13 Daily Reflector, he writes about the possible effect of legalizing video poker in North Carolina. He states that the industry would probably have little concern regarding the “effects on poor neighborhoods,” a valid concern that should be taken into consideration should it become legal. I'm not advocating that the businesses should be targeted in poor neighborhoods only, but I think poor people would rather see legalized gambling in their neighborhoods versus hard-core drug dealers and thieves hanging around all hours of the day and night. Not all poor people gamble or mismanage their finances, but those who like to gamble have always known where to find the hookup, whether legal or illegal. They're poor, not stupid.
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