Originally Posted by SorryForMyEnglish
I don't know for sure so I'm asking: is it so common among poor people to buy lottery tickets in America? Because to me it's not that much about the class (although I doubt rich people play it because they have their own bigger ''lotteries'' such as investment etc). I just think it takes certain character and certain mentality to play it. Same as people who are gambling. They're not poor most of the time. I doubt most poor people buy these tickets, only some of them. Same with working classes etc. Yes, they all need money for something they can't afford, but it's not the reason why one person would do that and another one wouldn't despite both needing money.
I remember my cousin's granddad was not only buying those tickets most of the time, he was playing in those things where you put tokens into for one time of trying to catch a stuffed animal lol. It was an excuse that he had a granddaughter who didn't care that much for catching the toys herself, not as much as he did. And he would win so many toys for her and then they would exchange lots of them for bigger toys and she would still have a lot of toys. And you know, it takes a lot of training to catch those toys and far more tries so you can only wonder how much money and time he spent to acquire that skill lol. Meanwhile it's not every poor person who would do that much and be attached to those things or even believe in them. But, perhaps, it comes from not having things in the past and wanting them (you know, Soviet times and poor family back then... His daughter would take endless amounts of credit money, competing with people in her mind to have as much and more things that what she thinks is a standard, she was even stealing my kinder toys even though her daughter already had more kinder surprises)
Nevertheless, I agree that lotteries are not ethical and they're wrong and they do fit a lot into capitalist ideology which is not ethical too. But, as I said before, I think someone who just plays the lottery isn't harming anyone else, no matter what class they are. It's not that they have a high chance of winning lots of money anyway.
Well I'm not American (and neither is the OP I think,) but yeah apparently:
The bulk of the research literature pertaining specifically to the lottery involves various economic analyses showing the relationships between lottery play and lower income and minority groups. Lang and Omori (2009) analyzed data from the 2004 and 2005 Consumer Expenditure Surveys of 15,000 respondents to examine the characteristics of household members who lost money playing the lottery and in pari-mutual betting and those who did not lose money on these gambling activities. Among those respondents from money-losing households, the least wealthy and African-American respondents lost a higher proportion of their incomes purchasing lottery tickets and engaging in pari-mutual betting than wealthier and white respondents. Using cross-sectional times-series data from the Census Bureau's Current Population Surveys for all 50 states for 1976-1995, Freund and Morris (2005) concluded that a significant portion of the increase in income inequality (i.e., the discrepancy in real income between the wealthiest and poorest segments of the population) over the 30-year period was attributable to the increasing prevalence of state lotteries. States with lotteries had higher levels of income inequality than states without a lottery. In another analysis of Consumer Expenditure Surveys from 1982 to 1998, Kearney (2005) found that the introduction of a state lottery was associated with a significant decline in non-gambling expenditures (e.g., food, rent and other bills), not by a reduction in expenditures of other forms of gambling. Furthermore, households in the lowest income third showed the most pronounced effect of a state lottery.
Lower socioeconomic status has been linked to pathological gambling among adults (Welte et al., 2001); and in the current analysis of a combined sample of youth and adults, the lowest socioeconomic group had the highest percent of gambling on the lottery in the past year and the highest mean level of days gambled on the lottery. This effect of socioeconomic status on lottery play went away in the multivariate analysis when the census-based variable, neighborhood disadvantage, was taken into account. Neighborhood disadvantage is correlated with low socioeconomic status and minority race/ethnicity yet it may also represent a broader ecological factor – a cultural milieu where lotteries are easily available and an environment favorably inclined to gambling on the lottery
The authors found support for the hypothesis in that low-income participants were more likely to purchase lottery tickets when they were primed to perceive that their own income was low relative to a reference point. The authors concluded that for low-income participants, lotteries may be considered a “social equalizer” whereby everyone has an equal chance to win.
The current finding that males have higher levels of lottery play than females is consistent with gender-related findings for gambling as a whole and for other correlated behaviors, namely, alcohol and other substance use (e.g., Welte et al., 2001; Barnes et al., 2009). It has long been found that males are involved in higher levels of problem behaviors than females (Elliott et al., 1985; Hirschi and Goffredson, 1994). However, the age pattern of lottery gambling appears to be somewhat different from substance use behaviors. Data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health showed that alcohol and illicit drug use peaked earlier than lottery play in the current study; i.e., illicit drug use peaked around 18 – 20 years and alcohol use peaked around 21 – 25 years, and use of illicit drugs and binge drinking both declined steadily from the 30s to 65+ years (SAMHSA, 2007). On the other hand, the current study showed that gambling on the lottery (based on the average days gambled on the lottery) peaked in the 30s and remained high until 70+ years. The age pattern for lottery gambling is similar to reported age patterns for overall gambling incorporating multiple forms of gambling behaviors (Welte et al., 2002). Although gambling, alcohol and illicit drug use are often co-occurring behaviors (Welte et al., 2001; Barnes et al., 2009), lottery gambling is somewhat different from substance use in its age distribution across the lifespan. Once lottery gambling patterns are established in the 30s, they are stable until 70s.