Gambling will be legalized in Virginia about the same time that tobacco is replaced by the opium poppy as our main cash crop. Thus, the degenerates of Northern Virginia must squander their time and money in neighboring states, such as the casinos of West Virginia, Delaware, Pennsylvania or distant Atlantic City.
And so begins a highly irregular feature of The State of NoVa, in which developments of interest to those who like to observe the occasional card game, gaze upon the periodic slot machine or ponder the latest sporting point spread are reported. All information is purely for entertainment purposes, and is not intended to convey that any actual wagering or endorsement of wagering is happening anywhere in NoVa. Because that would be wrong. Yes, so wrong.
DATELINE GETTYSBURG, PA.: For the second time, Pennsylvania’s state Gaming Control Board shot down a proposal last week for a casino a half-mile from Gettysburg National Military Park. This would have been less than 90 miles from Fairfax, and would have put slots and table games into an existing hotel and convention center. The small matter of heroic and honorable military sacrifice on the actual location of said sacrifice likely trumped the desire of some to roll dice at 3 a.m. on a Tuesday.
But that didn’t stop businessman David LeVan from trying, twice, to infuse new jobs, tourists and much-needed tax revenue into the Gettysburg area. He actually lives across the street from the park’s visitor center, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported. And Gettysburg ain’t exactly rocking the economy right now.
Still, preservationists, veterans, religious groups — all classic non-degenerates — and others organized to defeat the proposed Mason-Dixon Resort & Casino. This leaves Charles Town, W.Va., with its overpriced blackjack tables and packed poker room filled with crazed young hold ‘em hellions, as the closest spot for NoVa gamblers. However ...
DATELINE D.C.: Always pushing the social envelope, the District government is looking to legalize online poker in the city, even as the feds are taking down some of the largest online poker sites in the world. The concept has actually passed as part of the city budget and was signed into law by Mayor Gray in January, and calls for dozens of live “hot spots” to be set up around the city where people could play poker if they brought their own laptop computers. This, presumably, would enable some NoVa degenerates to get their online Omaha fix in a fully legal manner.
The District wants to then expand this to home computers and roving laptops, so long as it could ensure that betting was available only within the geographic limits of the city, according to a recent story by The Post’s Justin Jouvenal and Michael Laris.
“We are trying to do as much innovative stuff as possible to increase revenue,” D.C. Council man Michael Brown said. “We have competition around the region on gaming, so we had to do something. Also, the online, offshore poker companies are already here. ”
I don’t know what competition he’s talking about. Maryland can’t figure out how or where to build a measly slots parlor. (Perryville? In a shopping mall? Wha?) Virginia’s got nothing. But forget that. D.C. wants action.
Sound crazy? Too good to be true? Well, Congress likes to mess around with D.C. when they’re bored, so anything can happen. But as of now, online gambling is in the works for the Nation’s Capital. An AP story said D.C. would be the first jurisdiction to try such a deal. Bring it.
Time now for ...
ASK DR. CHECKRAISE: Dr. T.J. Checkraise has lost money in every dark corner of this great country, from the grimiest craps game in Mississippi to the shiniest blackjack table in Vegas. Send your questions to him through the State of NoVa, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dear Dr. Checkraise: I like to play the lottery. Does that make me a degenerate? Signed, Leon Lotto, Lorton
Dear Leon: Sorry, but no. You are not a degenerate. You are simply a man with a dream, and no easy access to a wild 20-40 no limit game with no rake. Lots of people play the lottery. Housewives. Office workers. Starving journalists. Not everyone can be a degenerate. You have to live it. Enjoy your scratch-off, or your Cash 5. It’s clean, it’s legal, it helps the schools. What degenerate would ever do that?