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Legislation to appeal Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act

Jun 4, 2008
A letter of appeal sent by a bipartisan group of House Financial Services Committee members led by Representative Barney Frank (Democrat in Mass) to the Treasury Department and Federal Reserve has requested they hold off on writing the new regulations on the law over internet gambling that was passed in 2006, known as the UIGEA.

They claimed the law fails to define just exactly what internet gambling is, which since the law is targeted at banking institutions for allowing gambling transactions to go through, puts the burden on them to figure out the conflicts between state and federal laws, whether the transaction is actually coming from an entity which would fall under the definition of "internet gambling", which as already mentioned is not defined by the law itself so we may even see situations where one bank allows a transaction yet another bank declines it and they are from the same place. Further is that some of the information to make the decision on where the transaction is coming from, may not be provided by the banking facilities of some foreign countries. Are we to then deny all of those transactions on the very rare chance it could be an internet gambling transaction?

Even the Treasury and Federal Reserve officials have come forward saying that the law is does not have enough definition, leading to confusion and therefore is very hard to carry out on any working basis. Louise Roseman the director of bank operations and payment systems for the Federal Reserve testified that an internet gambling ban cannot be "ironclad".

Other concerns are the fact that pursuing what many consider a result that cannot be obtained will greatly take away resources needed much more in areas such as the mortgage crisis and turning our economy around. Forcing banks to play "internet gambling police" will further slow down the financial process, cause more stress on its ability to function properly and impede what might be completely legitimate financial transactions all in the name of banning an activity of choice by consenting adults from the privacy of their own home that has no victim unless the perpetrator of the activity chooses to not be responsible.

On a side note this writer must stop and point out that the last part of that last sentence should make everyone's ears prickle up. Lets break it down: "banning an activity of choice", means we are choosing to do it. This next part is what's scariest: "by consenting adults", meaning that we are completely agreeable to what we are about to do, much like two adults having consenting sex. Now the arguement against internet gambling is two-fold. Money laundering which can easily be thwarted and actually already is a non-issue by anyone in the know, and that gambling can ruin lives. Well so can sex if you are not "responsible". It is done between two consenting adults. Should that be outlawed too? Is it in the future? What is the exact difference? And finally "from the privacy of their own home that has no victim unless the perpetrator chooses to not be responsible". Once again, sounds like the same situation for sex.

I don't think the latter will ever be outlawed because people want the right to take the risk. What is the difference in gambling? Its a choice, not a requirement and just like with alcohol, there will be a small percentage of the population that cannot control themselves with that vice and just like alcoholics must avoid drinking, those that must avoid gambling to have a quality life will have to do so but the rest of the population should not be asked to give up what is to them just an occasional entertainment. Otherwise what is just? Is it to allow alcohol to continue to be sold when it is known and proven fact that it ruins many more lives than gambling.
About the Author
Steve Briggs is the author of this article on single deck black jack. Find more information about the subject at www.bondedcasinos.com
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