Wednesday, September 28, 2005

F***ing With History at Gettysburg

Developers want to put a casino in Gettysburg, PA. They say it won't be on actual battlefield land, ignoring the fact that the whole area is sacred. What's next, a floating casino over the Titanic? Let's put a casino on The Mall in DC. How about at Normandy? Or at Auschwitz? Or at Giza?

I'm not against casinos. Heck, of the whopping 4 stocks I own, three of them are casinos (and doing moderately well, thank you, which is more than I can say for Tootsie Roll). But they don't belong everywhere, and the hallowed ground of Gettysburg, which my son and I visited 13 months ago with a friend and his family, is just such a place.

I agree with the Op-Ed contributor linked above in the New York Times:
Building a casino at Gettysburg would be more than a gamble; it would be
folly. It cheapens the sacrifice of those who gave "the last full measure of
devotion" on that field. Casinos are everywhere, but there's only one
Gettysburg.
Update: I told my 9-year-old son about this this morning. He first response bordered on horror. I'll paraphrase here, but I'm pretty close: "They can't build casinos there. If they build casinos, they'll need to build more restaurants. And then they'll need more hotels. And pretty soon there won't be any Gettysburg left." And this is a kid who loves to go to Reno and/or Las Vegas with me.

4 comments:

Cameron said...

That's almost as bad as drilling for oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.
But seriously:
My mom's side grew up in Pennsylvania, and they lived in Gettysburg for a few years. I visited there in 2002, and it really stood out on my visit (which included NYC and Washington). It was easy to see how epic the battle must have been. The battlefield still looked ravaged, and since it was so flat, the bullets must have been flying. A casino would be entirely idiotic. There's enough casinos in Vegas for the whole world.

Darren said...

ANWR isn't hallowed ground. It may be pretty and pristine and all that, but it's not hallowed.

One other point I'll disagree with you on--there are *not* enough casinos in Vegas for the whole world. We need lots more so that my stock portfolio grows to the point that I won't have to eat only pinto beans in my retirement!

But you're right, it was an epic battle and President Lincoln correctly identified the importance of that land.

About 15 min down the road and down the freeway is another town. On the way from Virginia we stopped there at Wendy's for lunch. Houses, strip malls, fast food joints. Put the casino there, *not* in Gettysburg proper or its immediate vicinity.

And Cameron, thanks for participating here and for making sense--even when I disagree with you, I recognize and respect the logical thought processes that go into your comments.

Mike Thiac said...

It may be pretty and pristine and all that, but it's not hallowed

ANWR is neither pretty or pristine, but it is ugly. More like a desert with snow as opposed to sand.

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