Editorial: Delay decision on Massachusetts gaming

"Gov. Deval Patrick was wise to delay his decision on casino gambling in Massachusetts until later in the month, saying that he still has more information to wade through.

This is a decision that will affect the state for generations. It will alter many lives, change the economy of the Bay State, create new issues and have many consequences. It is not a decision to be made lightly or hastily, so no one should hold Patrick to his previous promise to make a decision this week.

This rational approach is in sharp contrast to what has happened in Middleboro in recent months where residents reluctantly voted to support a casino, to be built by the Mashpee Wampanoag Indian tribe (or more accurately, their billionaire backers). There was little time for debate and reflection on how it would affect the town and the region, especially since there was always the subtle threat that if Middleboro didn't make up its mind — and fast — the Indians would take their slot machines elsewhere.

What we have witnessed since the agreement was approved is the “outing” of the tribal chairman as a liar and rapist, very deep divisions within the Mashpee tribe, criticism from another Wampanoag tribe, threatened lawsuits and general chaos that bodes ill for the smooth construction of the proposed $1 billion complex."

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Editorial: Patrick should take time on casino choice (The Brockton Enterprise 9/7)