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Gambling couched in glamour

Oysters and champagne

As we approach the day when they run that f%#$ing horse race that allegedly "stops the nation", if you live anywhere near Melbourne Australia, you will find among the onslaught of Ads for vile gambling Apps, a new kind of voyeurism.

Our TV stations see nothing perverse in celebrating the excess and glamour of what the rich and elite will be imbibing during this event on the first Tuesday in November. I say perverse because the other headline stories this year are increasingly related to either rent stress, declining real wages, or massive profiteering from oil companies and energy retailers which gets passed on to already struggling Australians.  Rubbing salt into a widening wound between the majority and the minority apparently must be done with enthusiasm through our media.  With natural disasters ruining many people's lives, highlighting this divide becomes particularly cruel.

You've probably guessed by now that I find everything related to horse racing culture abhorrent. The marketing strategy that goes with the Melbourne Cup's "glamour artifice" is intended to hide the true purpose of this horse racing event, the lust for windfall gain. For those attending, it's also an excuse to dress up and get embarrassingly drunk.

If you have a child, trying to protect them from what's become an attempt to normalise gambling through excessive media advertising is difficult. If ever your child's school thinks that it's a good idea to run a "harmless" Cup sweep (i.e. a "fun" gambling game to predict the winner of this horse race), ask your school why reinforcing gambling culture is what's best for a young mind.

As for the public advertising of gambling Apps, I would ban it completely, just like we did with smoking, which is also not good for you... in case you need reminding.

Tip: Do not take a train anywhere near the Western suburbs late on Melbourne Cup Day. There are far too many swaggering people, stained dinner suits, broken heels, limp fascinators and unwanted amorous advances, with the occasional spew off to the side. Quite ugly.