casinos a tool to help Native American tribes pursue economic self-reliance?
Or could they destroy small town values? The Rules of the Game follows the
conflict that erupts when an Indian tribe decides to build a casino in Rohnert
Tribal Chairman Greg Sarris says the casino will lift tribal members out of poverty and help them pursue their dreams after centuries of oppression. Local resident Tom Scott fears the casino will bring neon lights and gambling addiction to the quiet back roads of Rohnert Park. Mayor Armando Flores hopes the casino will bring jobs to town, while a Las Vegas-based corporation sees Rohnert Park as an untapped market for gambling. Who will determine the future of the town?
Through the voices of people who are directly affected by Indian gaming, The Rules of the Game explores a modern day dilemma, where deeply held beliefs about race and economic opportunity get turned on their heads and where the definition of justice is in flux.
Some basic facts:
o There are 107 federally recognized Indian tribes in California, and 562 nationwide. 53 tribes in California operate casinos, and dozens more are negotiating for compacts to open new ones.
o Before a tribe can open a casino, slot machines must be permitted in the state where the tribe is located. In 2000, California voters amended the state consitution to allow casinos exclusively on Indian reservations.
o The 2003 total revenue from all Indian casinos nationwide was approx. $16.7 billion. California and Nevada Indian casinos accounted for approx. $3.6 billion in revenue.