When the Emerald Queen Casino moved its operation to the East Side of Tacoma, the flow of gamblers came out of the woodwork. Many people have forgotten they had a life before this casino planted its building conveniently on bus lines and directly off freeway exits.
My previous addiction to gambling has made me aware to the thousands of people with gambling addictions who are not getting help with this problem. Living blocks away, I see the many faces of despair, sadness and people asking themselves why they spent every penny. They wanted to double their money before paying rent, but now they gambled their rent and face possible eviction.
Some walk aimlessly, thinking of any way to get a little more money and try their luck. Often this need to win fuels stealing, drug-selling and sometimes prostitution. True, nobody forces the willing to spend all their time and money at the casino, but the convenience is too overwhelming for an addict.
Of course, we are all grateful for all the “donations” the EQC gives the community. In a humorous twist, the evicted, the homeless, the previous business owner, the divorced person, the drug addict, the addicted gamblers of Tacoma have actually donated every cent.