Jake Banks | 22 Oct 2018

Mickey Mouse - DisneyIt’s not the first time that large corporations have sought to vilify the casino industry under the guise of protecting family values, in order to protect their own financial interests and economic monopolies, and it will sadly not be the last. The upcoming mid-term US elections, held in November, would this year include a ballot as to whether the casino industry should be permitted to expand in the state of Florida.

In the event that the ballot is approved, the development and opening of any new casino in the state, which require a 60% majority vote in favor of the motion. This vote will be decided on state-wide and will cause nothing short of an administrative as well as a time-delay nightmare for the industry.

A Massive Investment in Prevention

It really comes as no surprise that Walt Disney and the Seminole tribe of Florida have collectively put up an amount of $36 million in order to prevent Florida from becoming, as they put it, the next Las Vegas.

It’s no secret that Disney drives the children’s entertainment business in the state. Making the casino entertainment industry into public enemy number one of sound family values is a strategic, if very cunning, move. As for the Seminole tribe, they currently control existing gambling activities in Florida and are obviously keen to protect their monopoly. 

Self-serving is a term that immediately springs to mind, as far as Disney as well as the tribe’s support of the ballot, is concerned. Dan Adkins, Chairperson of the Citizens for the Truth About Amendment 3, fully agrees that self-serving is the name of the game for both of these institutions. Adkins said that according to his view of the proceedings, the tribe is trying to buy insurance for the continuation of its federally endorsed monopoly.

Affecting a Family Friendly Reputation

A spokesperson for Walt Disney, Jacquee Wahler, pulled out the ultimate pity-card when she said that the corporation opposed the expansion of the gambling industry in Florida, as it directly threatened the state’s status as the ultimate family destination.

If the ballot motion succeeds on the 6th of November, it will be yet another stumbling block to overcome for the gambling industry. The strike-down of PASPA has opened a world of new opportunities that will mean millions in taxable income for a variety of charitable organisations working hard for the rights of children and families outside of the gaming industry, where needs are of a more serious and pressing nature than the need for the protection of a giant-sized amusement park.