Is the Lottery a Scam?


Year after year people waste their hard earned money on a silly piece of paper. The chance of winning the jackpot by purchasing one ticket is 1 in 292,201,338. That is one in two hundred ninety-two million.

There are better chances of having identical quadruplets (1 in 15 million) and death by a vending machine related accident (1 in 112 million). Yet, people still spend their money on these tickets. The average U.S. citizen spends approximately $645 a year playing the lottery.

No doubt people want to get rich, and the easiest way to do this would be to get lucky and win the lottery, but $645 a year just for a small chance of winning? 

There are 292.2 million combinations of numbers that can be created using the five white balls and red Powerball, and sources say over 440 million tickets were sold for the Powerball drawings Saturday, January 9. This means about 150 million duplicate tickets were sold in one drawing. 

Dylan, a freshman said “I think it is a great way to earn some cash but it is really hard to win and you are only getting part of the money… Yeah, I think it is a scam.”

Jordan, a freshman said “I don’t think it is like a real scam because people have a small chance of winning, but it is such an astronomically small chance of winning that it has the effect of a scam.” Upon hearing the fact that the average U.S. citizen spends approximately 645 dollars a year playing the lottery, he said “That is surprising to hear. It concerns me that that is the extent of gambling here in the U.S.”

While some lucky people finally won for the first time in three months, the fact of the matter doesn’t change. This is America, and instead of trying to solve problems for everyone so people can live the lives they deserve, so we can improve the lives of our generation and the ones to follow, we waste our money so we can get rich and famous and block out what is happening in the rest of the world.

What’s your take on the lottery?