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Eng 1550 - Lottery Hope

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John Johnson

Professor Nogay

English 1550

26 October 2018

Lottery Hope

         Lottery is a form of gambling that includes picking numbers for a chance of winning money in return. Lottery originated from the Europeans. Risking money on chances of winning hundreds or thousands of dollars can be worth it over time but can take a toll on yourself. Placing small amount of money in drawings to win large amounts of money, can leave people wondering what in the world they can do with half-a-million dollars. Many people around the world place money in many different types of lottery chances. Lotteries are in various forms such as sweep stakes, scratch-offs, jack pots, and even green card lottery. These contests are the ones that will leave people with hope that is very unlikely to become a reality. Lottery is great to have in our society but choosing to participate in drawings depends on risking your hope and dreams, finances, as well as behavior.

        Lottery can be a blessing to someone or can turn out to be an awful burden. Just as Adam Piore explains throughout his story in Why We Keep Playing the Lottery, he goes on to talk about how you can put two dollars down and have a chance at winning millions of dollars. While you await the draw the you entered you think of many things such as what could I do with all of this money. Risking just a little bit of money for a chance of a high turnout of money is worth it to many people. “For a very small amount of money you might change your life. For $2 you can spend the day dreaming about what you would do with half a billion dollars—half a billion dollars!” (Piore 700). Piore continuously explains many different ways of just slapping down a few bucks on chances of winning millions. “Boy, I could win 100 million, rather than considering that they might lose” (Piore 705). Piore makes many good points of why to play the lottery and why not to play the lottery. The other author that is making his case is Glen Ross of Reconsidering the Lessons of the Lottery for Knowledge and Belief; his belief defers from Adams in this case. Glen believes that if you play the lottery and you know, there are millions of other people playing, what are the odds that your numbers come out. He does not think you should get your hopes up at all because the odds of your numbers coming out are so slim. “In a fair lottery with a million tickets and only one winning ticket, I should be very confident that my ticket is to lose. Prima facie, my high confidence that my ticket will lose makes it epistemically permissible for me to accept or believe that my ticket will lose.” (Ross 38). Both of their viewpoints on the way to either get your hopes up or don’t think you will win at all are both helpful, but I believe that you should believe in yourself a little bit because if you don’t then why even buy the ticket in the first place.  

        The lottery is a very expensive hobby that you can get yourself stuck in. People across the whole United States spend hundreds of dollars every month on trying to win big amounts of money. Financially lottery might not be the best hobby for everyone. Piore makes many points about risking your well-being if you get carried away playing the lottery. “A person who makes $15,000 a year and buys $1,500 worth of lottery tickets has spent 10 percent of his income, while a person who makes $150,000 and buys $1,500 has spent only 1 percent. “It is true that poor people spend a substantially higher fraction of their income on lottery tickets” than the affluent, he notes. “But I don’t think it is necessarily irrational. Buying lottery tickets is a fairly inexpensive way of raising the ceiling on what can happen to you economically” (Piore 706). Correspondingly, Ross has similar beliefs as Piore. Ross does not think if you can easily afford the lottery tickets you should not be buying them. If you are living by paycheck to paycheck, he thinks you should not risk your money and hope for a big turnout from the lottery. “There is no scenario that poor people can come up with in which they are suddenly going to get very rich” (Ross 40). I agree with these two beliefs. If you really cannot afford to buy the lottery tickets and have to worry about money, then you should not be spending your money on the lottery.



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