By Dan Kennedy • The press, politics, technology, culture and other passions

No slots in Danvers. (No slots anywhere.)


I was hoping this would go away so quickly that I wouldn’t have to write about it. But today Ethan Forman of The Salem News reports that local business leaders think a 24-hour, seven-day slots parlor in Danvers would just be a wicked awesome way of boosting the North Shore economy.

No surprise that our local Mr. Potters are excited about the idea of turning my town into Pottersville. But it looks as though those of us who oppose casinos and slots are going to have to mobilize — or at least get ready to mobilize.

To that end, I’ve started a Facebook page, No Slots in Danvers, and I’m going to keep a close eye on developments. The last thing we need is 1,250 slot machines behind the Liberty Tree Mall, abutting a residential neighborhood.

As those of you who’ve been reading Media Nation for a few years know, I was a staunch opponent of plans to build a casino — at one time billed as the world’s largest — in my hometown of Middleborough. That plan collapsed, fortunately, and I hope this one will, too. At the very least, I find it hard to believe that the proposal would win a townwide referendum, no matter how many goodies the developers promise.

Just say no to slots and casinos.

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  1. Patricia Bennett

    I agree Dan. Liberty Tree Mall is no place for 24 hour slot machines and you are 100% correct to oppose this. I assumed it was a dead issue because it is so far fetched. I guess some think its a good idea, but then again some people think Casinos in MA are a good idea.

  2. Six years ago (gosh has it been that long) I thought the idea of building casinos and slots parlors in any small New England town was pretty far fetched. If you listen to people who live near the CT casinos, it hasn’t exactly been a pain free economic windfall for them. The tribal casino they want to build in Taunton – or more accurately, in East Taunton, a little residential village where I once lived – they want to build the world’s largest casino next to the elementary school. In the city wide vote, the majority of the East Taunton precincts voted against it. Pottersville. Good analogy.

  3. lou gawab

    I thought Liberals were all about freedom of choice? That would seem to be counter to your feelings about Middleborough and Danvers.

    • Dan Kennedy

      @Lou: You’re confusing liberals with libertarians.

      • lou gawab

        I see…only “pro-choice” when it’s convenient. 😉

        • Dan Kennedy

          Community first is pretty much the foundation of liberalism, @Lou. What’s inconsistent is to accuse liberals of either wanting or not wanting to engage in social engineering. The principle is that individual choice can’t trump the interests of society.

  4. Please don’t slander the good name of Pottersville, which is a vibrant, pedestrian-oriented city. As far as I can remember, it has no casino. I understand that the proposed slots parlor in Danvers would be accessible only by car and would not any benefit other businesses in town. It would be an alien presence, not an organic enterprise responding to the needs and wants of Danvers residents. That’s more like a nuclear waste depository, not a Pottersville.

  5. cynthiastead

    I am with you, my brother, and you need to pick up some organizing tricks from Gladys Kravitz as well.

  6. In 20 years, there will be regional slot parlors throughout out the Commonwealth. The real gambling money is made at local areas with little infrastructure. The regional “super casinos” is a guise to bring in most profitable slot parlors. After that, we will have slots in gas stations and places where KENO is being hosted.

    I have seen “table games” been easily converted to electronic machines for those who are so inclined.

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