Slot in Slots
I am a loyal fan of your column. You have taught me a lot about slot machines and I really appreciate the work you do.
My sisters and I really love playing slots. We are in some casino at least twice a month. We have long noticed that slot makers make games featuring every race under the sun except black.
Any thoughts as to why this is? It seems to me that black patrons support the gaming industry just as much as anyone else.
Hope you can shed some light on this for me.
Thanks for the kind words about my column.
There's no good reason for not featuring black people on some slot games.
One game that really shows a missed opportunity for diversity is Rich Life by Aruze Gaming, a Japanese company that is increasing its presence in the United States. My cousin enjoys playing this machine, so I frequently get roped into playing along with her.
When you start playing, you have to pick a character that will represent you on the game board on the big screen above the machines. Your choices are man or woman, blond hair with blue eyes or dark hair with brown eyes.
I just realized that I always pick the option that looks most like me, the man with blond hair and blue eyes, which is pretty close except that the blond hair I had as a little kid turned brown as I got older - and then fell out! With a little extra programming and graphics work, Aruze could have given more choices so more people could pick characters that resembled them.
I think the best way to deal with gambling wins and losses would be to have a single form on which both wins and losses are reported. Wins from W-2G or other wins would be entered, followed by losses. If losses exceed wins, nothing would be included in AGI.
One more point in this regard: People who purchase health insurance through the Affordable Care Act also have their subsidies affected by AGI. If wins are included, but not losses, they qualify for a smaller subsidy.
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