I want to share a letter that I just received about the Kentucky State Legislature’s plan to bring slot machines and eventually casinos to our state. Anyone who opposes this needs to speak up now by calling their legislators and making their views known. Please read the letter below, and use the information to call your legislator. We must not let this pass.
Dear Kentucky Baptists,
My name is Andrew Walker and I’m a professor of Christian ethics at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. I also serve as the Kentucky Baptist Convention’s legislative agent in Frankfort, where I advocate for policies that Kentucky Baptists support.
I’m writing with an urgent plea: I’m asking you to contact your state senator and state representative to oppose any form of gambling in Kentucky.
The Kentucky legislature is on the cusp of legalizing slot machines in Kentucky, which is just one part of a larger vision for casinos to populate our beloved Commonwealth. On Thursday of last week, a bill that would legalize slot machines under the misguiding label of “Historic Horse Racing” passed out of a committee with an 8-0 vote. That means it will likely receive a vote this week before the full Senate and, if we do not speak up, possibly begin making its way through the House of Representatives.
Kentucky Baptists have a long record opposing gambling. Why? Because Scripture calls us to love our neighbor and support policies that benefit everyone and promote strong communities. Gambling does exactly the opposite. As I wrote in a column for Kentucky Today, there are a number of problems with gambling:
- Gambling hurts families by impoverishing them.
- Gambling hurts families by creating behavior that leads to their destruction.
- Gambling caters to personalities with addiction struggles.
- Gambling creates government corruption.
- Gambling preys on human weakness.
- Gambling teaches an ungodly system of wealth accumulation.
- Gambling disincentives work.
- Gambling invites social pathologies into the culture through the rise of other questionable industries that pop up around gambling (e.g., payday lending, sexually oriented businesses).
Can you take three minutes and call Frankfort and let your legislator know you oppose gambling? It’s urgent that you call, and trust me, legislators will receive your message. You can call the legislative message line at 1-800-372-7181. Operators will help you identify your legislator and take your message. You can also email your legislator directly to let them know you are opposed to expanded gambling sinking its teeth into Kentucky.
Kentucky Baptists, right now is the time to have our message heard. If we’re looking for a way to love our neighbor and be salt and light in our culture, doing so is only a phone call or email away.