During the congressional debate on the five-year $500 billion deficit reduction bill, the article "In the Lottery, Even a Winner Can Lose," July 29, reports that Americans spent $304 billion in 1991 on gambling. Comparing these two figures hints that money is not scarce in this country.
Had these funds been unselfishly spent in productive investments for education, the arts, technology, neighborhood improvements, and deficit reduction, everyone in the country would have been a genuine winner.
The millions that people lose so a few lucky ones can strike it rich are a poor rationale for funding any public or private enterprise. Now is the time for citizens to use common sense and make every dollar count for more than a chance. Anne M. Hofflund, San Diego
Letters are welcome. Only a selection can be published, subject to condensation, and none acknowledged. Please fax letters to (617) 450-2317 or address them to "Readers Write," One Norway St., Boston, MA 02115.