Big Brother

The state of Washington’s Gambling Commission has found a whole new kind of problem for government to worry about.  It seems that the senior citizens of that fine state have developed a nasty habit of getting together and playing…cards.  That’s right.  Poker.

The Gaming Commission, though, has become aware of the caliber of disaster indicated by the presence of a poker table in their State.  There’s trouble, they say.  And that starts with “T,” and that rhymes with “P,” and that stands for Poker.  And all night long those Washington seniors will be frittering—frittering!—their time away.

Yes, they got Trouble with a capital T right there in Washington State.

In fact, those misbehaving seniors in the Snohomish Senior Center have been playing illegally for over four years, ever since the Snohomish city council banned such social card games in 2009.  No more, though.  Ever alert to serious problems, the Gaming Commission sent those miscreants a letter and shut down their games (they also were playing such nasty things as bridge and pinochle—and doing all that for actual pennies).

Never mind that the Center’s Executive Director, Bob Dvorak, has tried to explain that the center provides an important mechanism for getting an often disengaged group of folks together and defeat their aloneness.

It keeps them from being isolated.  They’re in for the nutritious meal, and they have social skills; they see their friends, they see the staff.

We want them in a safe, fun environment where they’re surrounded by their friends and colleagues.

But Dvorak said that if seniors can’t play for pennies, they might not come at all.  Oh, well.

Gaming has been cleaned up, but there’s still Trouble in Washington.  But now it’s a different kind.  It stems from Big Brother Knowing Better.  Because grown, adult human beings of an age need to be told what to do.

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