Green River Star -

By David Martin

Waking from a seductive dream


I used to love the idea of a lottery in Wyoming, I really did.

I’ve played, I’ve lost and the initial excitement of checking my numbers after a drawing has faded since the Wyoming lottery’s inception.

Often, lotteries have been called taxes on the poor, and it isn’t hard to see why.

Promising big payouts even at the start, lotteries like Mega Millions and Powerball give their players a tantalizing glimpse into the world of “what if I win.” It’s a lifeline out of the blue-collar drudgery that many people are often locked into. Freedom from bills and freedom to do whatever because winning would make all of a person’s financial woes disappear. If anything, it would give the winner the opportunity to walk to their nasty foreman and tell them that often thought about phrase, “take this job and shove it.”

However, what does the lottery really cost? Tickets are between $1 and $3, depending on which lottery played and if the Megaplier or Power Play options are played, which are the only ways of ensuring a chance at that sweet, sweet jackpot. Only playing Mega Millions, with a single set of numbers with the Megaplier included, would cost $208 a year. Doing the same with Powerball is $312. Doing both, which lotto tickets suggest doing, costs $520 a year. Those inexpensive tickets certainly add up.

Reading how much I’ve written against the lottery, one would image that I’m advocating for Wyoming legislators to cease allowing a lottery to function in the state. I’m not. I believe giving people the individual choice to play if they want to is paramount over all of the negative aspects of state lotteries. People want entertainment out of it and they should have access to these games.

However, for me, it represents nothing more than a deep well to throw cash into.

I’m done tossing my money into it.


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