We are living in historic times as the winds of change blast through the United States. For generations, sports fans had to watch on as followers of horse racing, soccer and football placed bets on the outcome of the biggest and best tournaments and games. This was a luxury that was out of the reach of most in the United States, unless they were willing to pack up and travel to the major land-based sportsbooks of Las Vegas. That wasn’t an option for the majority with a love for following and making predictions on professional sports. But times are changing.
More Americans than ever before can now legally gamble on sports fixtures following a major change of heart amongst officials in Washington D.C. The long-running blanket ban on betting was lifted and the decision on whether or not to legalize online sportsbook and casino betting was put in the hands of governors of each state. Some areas, including New Jersey, acted quickly to re-write the laws concerning gambling, allowing residents and visitors to wager on sports using their home computers and smartphone apps. Other states decided they were happy as they were and kept the ban on betting in place, for now.
Then there are the states like Alabama which is content to sit on the fence on the issue. They are happy to remain neutral for the time being and see how things play out across the country before putting the matter to a vote. For many inhabitants of Alabama, that indecision lacks foresight and ambition. They aren’t happy to simply sit and wait while neighboring states enjoy the many benefits of legalized betting, including the increased freedoms and tax income.
Determined to be Heard
Supporters of legalized betting in Alabama want to see action and are determined to make their voices heard. What are their plans, and will they get their wish? In this article, we check the lay of the land in the Yellowhammer State, what supporters of betting are doing to realize their dream and when we could see online sportsbook gambling in the region.
Like the gambling laws in many states, the current rules in Alabama are as clear as mud. As it stands, online sportsbook and casino gambling is illegal in the state, and nothing has changed on that front. The problem with that is, the rules were created long before online betting using a desktop computer or smartphone was possible. Therefore, many of the laws are severely outdated and this has created many loopholes and no shortage of grey areas that are often taken advantage of. Now, we don’t encourage any reader in Alabama to risk the wrath of the law and attempt to bet, but it’s a well-known secret that it does happen.
While hundreds, if not thousands, of bets are placed illegally in Alabama, the state is missing out on the huge funds that could be generated by legalizing, regulating, and taxing online gambling. The fact some are breaking the laws and betting while the state misses out on taxing gambling isn’t enough to bring about change, but the sheer number of citizens who are in support of legalized sports and casino betting is making those in charge sit up and pay attention.
Everyone knows illegal gambling is happening in the region and everyone knows the area is missing out on tax dollars, but it’s also true that officials are missing the chance to change the laws and create a fair, legal and licensed gambling sector, one that all sports fans can enjoy.
Take the power
Legalizing betting takes the profits away from organized crime and puts it into the community where it can be used to improve the area and help Alabama bounce back from the last two years and the crippling effects of the lockdowns and restrictions caused by COVID-19. Thankfully, if you are one of the many who supports betting in the state, the signs are encouraging.
Alabama saw a move to legalize online sports betting fail to make it through last year, but a lot has changed since then. So far, all attempts to pave the way for betting have hit a brick wall, but they haven’t been wasted. Attitudes are changing amongst officials and everyday residents. It now appears a case of when online betting will become legal in Alabama, rather than if.