Yellow Bird: Tribal casinos should be alcohol free

"The Navajo Nation is considering whether to sell alcohol at its new casino that will open in July near Gallup, N.M. The Navajo gaming chief, Bob Winter, supports liquor sales, saying the casino could lose gaming income without them. George Hardeen, a spokesman for Navajo President Joe Shirley Jr., agreed, noting they are "aware that casinos make a significant portion of their profits from alcohol sales."

Casinos need to make money. They are, after all, businesses in the business of making money

Opponents, however, say the sales would contribute to the alcoholism that already is a problem on the Navajo and other reservations.

I agree with the opponents.

It's a well-known fact that alcoholism has caused a great many problems on reservations. Just ask someone who has lost relatives to drunk drivers.

Many times, car accidents on reservations can be attributed to drunk drivers. That is the overt destructive nature of alcohol. Then, add to that a long list of health problems that alcohol can make worse problems such as diabetes, heart disease, strokes and cancer."

Get the Story:
Dorreen Yellow Bird: Tribal casinos should go alcohol-free (The Grand Forks Herald 1/26)

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