Gambling is a big business, a social disease. People flock to the 4D shops to buy numbers. Likewise, 3D, Toto, lotteries and lucky draws always attract many gamblers. Genting Highlands is famous for its casino and thousands of people go there every day to try to make it rich. Gambling is an obsession. What is it that makes gambling such a powerful obsession?
From what I see, gambling offers a chance for a gambler to get huge returns from a small bet. The chance of winning is very small but there is always the hope, the possibility. For a gambler, the hope of winning is enough to keep him spending his money on gambling. As most gamblers never win anything they keep hanging on to the hope that their luck might just change for the better. They keep hoping and hoping, and that is the gambler’s obsession.
For those who win something, the lure of money drives them on to win even more. So they keep on gambling. They are enslaved by the lure of money.
My late grandfather once said that he never won anything from buying numbers. Yet he continued to buy them until his death.
A not-so-rich aunt of mine is always going on about how she nearly struck some numbers. She says she spends about three to four hundred ringgit every month on numbers. She has won some money before but she is still trying to make it rich. Her obsession drives her on and on to spend her hard-earned money on numbers. She does this to the extent of neglecting her children’s welfare. Such is the madness of gambling.
This madness is evident every time I go into town. On the days when the gambling shops are open, I can see the throngs of people in these shops. Young, old and even crippled people on crutches jostle and push one another just to buy numbers.
There are two women who go visiting the people around my neighborhood to collect bets. These women are runners for an illegal 40 operator. Everyone knows what they do. No one reports them to the police. Many are their regular customers. It is quite incredible to see grown men and women part with their money so easily and regularly. I wonder whether I would be sucked into this when I grow up.
I have heard of families breaking up because of the breadwinner’s gambling losses. They get into heavy debts that they cannot repay. Their lives become a big mess. They lose their possessions, sometimes even their lives.
It is evident then that the effects of gambling are never good. The consequences can be disastrous for those who persist in it. It is best not to indulge in it. Money can be spent on better things than feeding gambling shops.