Gambling on Bad Behavior

Frankly, I’m fed up with excuses for out-of-control, bad behavior.  Excuses like:
          1) it’s an addiction
          2) it’s somebody else’s fault.

Nothing is going to change in anyone’s life until responsibility for choices, actions, or inactions is taken.

Here’s an example:  during a year-long gambling binge at the Caesar’s Palace and Rio casinos in Las Vegas in 2007, Terrence Watanabe managed to lose nearly $127 million (most of his personal fortune).  Watanabe – unmarried, no kids – who spent his adult life working around the clock for his father’s import novelty business, picked up gambling in Las Vegas and was treated like a king.

Apparently, he drank to excess, and is claiming that the casinos named in his lawsuit violated gambling regulations by not shutting off his ability to gamble when he was drunk – which is a state rule.

Mr. Watanabe is also a criminal defendant who faces 28 years in prison for “intent to defraud and steal from Harrah’s,” stemming from $14.7 million that the casino says it extended to him as credit and that he lost.

So, which is it?  Is Watanabe responsible for his debts, drunk or sober?  Or is Harrah’s responsible as they allegedly let him gamble and lose when he was drunk?

Well, it might be BOTH!

Watanabe may have a case if, indeed, Harrah’s broke the law about allowing drunks to gamble.

HOWEVER (and it is a BIG “however”), that argument might work for Watanabe for one tour of gambling, but when sober – sober, mind you – he made the choice…the choiceto go back to Harrah’s, drink, gamble, lose, ask for credit, and not pay the full amount he owed.

Watanabe is responsible for his bad behavior, bad habits and debts.  If Harrah’s employees kept him gambling when he was “fall-down drunk,” then they have to deal with the civil courts and the gaming commission of the state.  However, how drunk do you have to be before you are not responsible for deciding on a bet, physically pushing chips forward, and so on?  If you’re fall down drunk, you’re probably not able to do those things. 

He placed his bets; he lost.  He needs to pay up.