I’ve never dropped a dime into a Detroit slot machine (sorry Mrs. I, Dan G., and whoever owns MGM). Sure, I’ve eaten and partied at the casinos, even wandered onto a gaming floor to smoke or get change for the People Mover. But I realize I have an addictive personality, and don’t want to gamble with fate.
However, if you don’t like the casinos or what they represent, you can partially blame me.
In November 1996, I was swayed by the siren song: A “yes” vote for casinos would spur development, increase tourism, and provide jobs. Even if I didn’t personally gamble, who was I to decide for others?
In a Nevada hotel a few months later, I went down for coffee at 6 a.m. After spotting a poor soul intently seated at a slot machine, chain-smoking and sipping what appeared to be a Manhattan, I thought: “What have I done?”
Our story by Joe Lapointe explores the answers. For better and for worse, casino culture is fully ingrained here. The jobs and taxes generated are a necessary shot in the arm for our post-bankrupt city budget. But problem gamblers, crime, and more also go with the territory.
Speaking of voting, there are two groups pushing 2016 ballot proposals to legalize, regulate, and tax marijuana in Michigan. We see how some military veterans use pot to cope with PTSD.
And while we don’t get to vote on their selection, we’re pretty excited to visit current and past recipients of Kresge Artist Fellowships.
We’ve got a lot else going on in this issue, but let me just say this about our 2016 Restaurant of the Year. It’s a place I’m happy to drop a few dimes at any chance I get.