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The California State Lottery: A Special Report

Some facts everyone should know about the lottery.
           Some people say the lottery can lead to gambling problems.  Some believe its a hidden tax on the poor. But, there's one store that's the luckiest in the state.
           Hiring a financial planner to deal with a jackpot is what lottery players, like Johnny Williams dream of. He plays, every week, twice a week at  Lichine's Liquor and Deli in Sacramento. Arguably one of the luckiest stores in the state.
           Ken Low - who owns Lichine's says his store is one of only two in the state to sell three big winning tickets
           But, somewhere between the big winners, the big dreams, and the financial planners are players like Leo Curry.  
           He's like most of us, he's never won big, and the odds are he never will. Yet, he continues to play.
           Others worry about the proliferation of the California lottery system.
           "Well the lottery system can be very addictive," said psychiatrist Dr. Bradley Wajda.
           Wajda, said some patients cant escape the temptation of lottery tickets, they're everywhere.
           He said a gambling addiction is just as powerful as alcoholism or drug addiction. "Certainly, because it destroys lives, people lose everything they have they lose relationships," said Wajda. 
           James Butler, with the California Coalition Against Gambling Expansion claims, the lottery is really a hidden tax on the poor. He said they spend a disproportionate amount of their income on lottery tickets. He said the consequences are devastating. "Increased gambling results in increase in crime, in unemployment welfare, and an increase in homelessness," said Butler.
             The state concedes about 3% of California adults have a gambling problem.



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