Bessemer residents react to bingo order

By Jonathan Hardison

BESSEMER, ALA. (WBRC)- Bingo is back in the Bessemer cutoff.

District Attorney Arthur Green signed an order Monday allowing the bingo halls to re-open as long as Greenetrack stays open.

So how are folks in the cutoff reacting to the news? It's hard to drive through Fairfield without thinking of bingo. Even though the halls have been closed for months, the memory of the money going in and out of those buildings is still fresh.

"I'm all for it," said a bingo supporter who identified himself as Keno. "It's not hurting anybody, in my opinion, if you wanna play. If you don't wanna play, don't go. I've won some and I've lost some, but I like it, it's entertaining."

All of the folks Fox 6 talked to Monday got the news that bingo was back from us, and it took them only seconds to form an opinion.

"Gives people jobs, everyone needs one right now," Keno said. "So I appreciate if it would come back."

"I think it's good because it helps education and, as you can see, the city needs some productivity so I think it's a good idea," said Venisha Coleman, another bingo supporter.

"I think it's a good idea," said another bingo supporter. "Because we need the money here. It'll help a lot of things going on education-wise and other things."

"It's good because it's good for the kids and education and stuff," said another. "And people that need the jobs."

But not everyone likes the idea of these halls reopening.

"It's a bad thing, because gambling is bad," said bingo opponent Brooklyn Brown. "There's more babies in the world so they need to be focused on other things than playing bingo."

"You spend your money how you wanna spend it," Coleman said. "Who's to say you might wanna go play bingo, who's to say they need all that stuff, so I'm all for bingo."

The order today says bingo halls in the cutoff can only stay open as long as Greenetrack is open. No word yet on whether Attorney General Luther Strange plans to make a move against the machines at Greenetrack.

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