Slots in Arundel Mills mall? Don't bet on success

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The issue of where slot machines should be placed in Maryland has once again demonstrated that the state's politics are uniquely illogical ["Arundel Mills zoning for casino approved," Metro, Dec. 22].

The decision not to put slots at one or both of the state's major thoroughbred racetracks clearly was made without Marylanders' interests in mind. Placing slots next to a shopping mall is like placing an emergency room in a supermarket instead of a hospital. People who gamble go to racetracks, casinos or slot parlors, not shopping malls. And anyone who thinks a six-week live racing season at Pimlico (just so Maryland can retain the Preakness) can keep horse racing alive in Maryland clearly has not been to Pimlico in recent years; it is among the most decrepit facilities not yet demolished in Baltimore.

Why can't Maryland have a nice, friendly racetrack with horse racing, slots, restaurants, entertainment, etc., as other states have? What, other than Baltimore money and influence, could explain why the state is going in a direction sure to fail? Why can't the Cordish Cos. get together with the Maryland Jockey Club and develop the racetracks in a way that makes sense?

David I. Sommers, Kensington

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