Playing with Money

Playing with Money

Jackson Lears

Americans have always been of two minds about gamblers and gambling.

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0m 37sec

Americans have always been of two minds about gamblers and gambling. Several decades ago, Baltimore sportswriters searching for the ultimate accolade for the Colts' daring, crew-cut quarterback, Johnny Unitas, dubbed him a "riverboat gambler" in tribute to his knack for making big plays. But during those same years, the Maryland legislature went about abolishing the slot machines that had been a feature of  every bar and roadhouse from Baltimore to Leonardtown. Public support for legalized gambling was at a low ebb. The riverboat gambler remained an appealing metaphor, but slots-playing waitresses and sheet metal workers seemed intolerable. ...

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