What Makes the Legal Age for Gambling Legal?

Is it 18 or 21 years old? The legal age for gambling differs with certain localities depending on a locality's perception of what is legal. And today what is legal is often what a locality thinks is of the highest interest helpful or profitable to its interest.

The interest of a locality is decided by elected officials acting in behalf of their constituents. In a city, for instance, they elect a mayor who becomes the embodiment of the ideals and interests of the people of the locality. Sometimes the mayor may opt for conferring with other city officials on an issue, like setting an allowable age for gambling in their city.

As city officials discuss with the mayor they look at issues through the eyes of what interests and ideals the city holds dear or what will be most helpful for the development of the same. There are basically two things that people hold dear today as their ideal and interest—morals or profits. It's often one or the other. It seldom is both. A great statesman once said people cannot opt for both money and morals.

The above scenario also obtains when deciding what the legal age for gambling is. If the state where the issue is discussed has a lot of gambling outfits and elected officials are directly or indirectly influenced by these entities the score is likely to favor the lower age limit option. There might be some concessions allowed the moral side of the issue but it will be a majority vote in favor of a legal age.

If the state where the issue is hotly pursued is a national capital and the country is sure to desire a good image projection to the international community—especially where the seat of presidency resides—it would most likely be a landslide vote for the moral side of the issue. It may even opt for a total ban on gambling—not necessarily on the grounds of morality per se—but on a good image projection.

Most capital cities in Middle East countries ban all forms of vices because their kings live in their cities. And offenses may result to the most severe capital punishment. But there are also places where democracy and morality take precedence over issues like setting age limits for gambling, drinking, and smoking. So, what's the legal age for gambling? It depends on a people's priorities in life. Hence, moralists say what is legal is not necessarily moral, and vice versa.

Useful Links