Sports wagering in the US became legal in September 2019. People are allowed to place bets in person and on a mobile phone from different locations. To date, 30 states, including the District of Columbia, have legalized sports betting. The US is currently home to over 40 legal sportsbooks operating in various jurisdictions. Despite the success of sports betting in the US, many people have expressed ethical concerns that come with sports betting legalization.
Dealing with conflicts of interest
Since the legalization of sports betting in the US, state regulators have so far approved more than 40 sportsbooks. The number is expected to increase as more states legalize sports betting. The territories that have already legalized it see a chance to generate more revenue in the form of taxes. Other states are eyeing and rushing to seize the opportunity.
This is good news to the state governments, but to the citizens, it raises various concerns. The state governments have not properly sealed the gaps in the laws that protect their citizens. They raise taxes that are harder for retail and online sportsbooks to manage, leaving operators with no option but to adjust sports odds. The citizens have to dig deeper into their pockets to place bets.
Dealing with the urge to make more money
Sports betting is one of the major activities that US citizens engage in. There are hundreds of opportunities the citizens get to place bets and win money. Once an individual starts to place sports bets, they don’t stop as they try to win more. Some of them develop gambling addiction and have problems changing their betting habits. The main problem is that they don’t keep the discipline of sticking to their bankroll. Instead, they spend the money budgeted for other things which have implications for families, work, and education.
Betting on collegiate sports
If you look closely at the sports betting legalization map, you will notice its legalization included betting on collegiate sports. This in itself has a lot of ethical concerns. College sports are popular in the US, and due to this, sports betting has attracted a large number of Gen Z gamblers. Many students have started to bet on sports, including high school students. Unlike the older generation, this group of bettors might lack the skills to manage their money or what to do with large winnings.
It is easy for them to fall prey to temptations due to a lack of money or to have too much than they can handle. Games such as fantasy sports require participants to form teams of real colleges and compete against other teams. The prizes range in millions each year. Some students decide to leave college to engage in such sports.