NATIONAL GAMBLING IMPACT STUDY COMMISSION
MS. TUCKER: Good afternoon, almost evening.
My name is Sue Tucker, I'm an educator, a strategic planner, a former member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives and I also coordinated the Massachusetts Anti-Casino Coalition and it was a very proud day when my former colleagues voted casinos down 123 to 31, last May.
But I'm here to share with you some of my learnings from citizens as I was working on this coalition. And to share a prediction with you that I think speaks directly to what you're struggling with, which is what is government's appropriate role in relationship to games of chance, whether state sponsored, privately sponsored, et cetera? It has to do with a simple question which is on our new 10th grade Massachusetts Education Reform math test: Simon is conducting a probability experiment, he randomly selects a tag from a set of tags that are numbered from one to one hundred and then returns the tag to the set. He is trying to draw a tag that matches his favorite number, 21, he has not matched his number after 99 draws, what are the chances he'll match his number on the 100th draw?
I'm not going to embarrass anyone in this audience and ask them to answer that question, but I guarantee you that most Americans can't answer it and I guarantee you the state is scared to death about the results of this tenth grade math test. But you and I know who can answer that question, and those are all the statisticians that work for the lotteries and work for the casinos.
And that brings me back to my issue, what is the role of government, and I suggest it is to level the playing field, to provide at least, information on the risks and odds when people play games of chance. Now other people have referenced government's role in relationship to that with many, many things, And I'll tell you, Americans go ballistic when they think the playing field is not fair. They did it with tobacco, they did with food labeling, Americans want to know, okay, if I'm going to eat fat, okay, you tell me what is in it. They want accurate labeling and they want disclosure and they want truth.
Now, my prediction is this, to end my statement here, that with all due respect to this Commission and with all due respect to my former colleagues in the legislatures, this issue will be decided by the people because the people and the citizens and the voters are going to catch on and they are going to say, they're going to tell us what the role of government is. And as more and more people are perceived as "being taken advantage of by either the state or private industry" they're going to rise up and say, give us the odds, tell us the information, tell us the information.
CHAIRPERSON JAMES: Thank you.