Today on ESPN Page 2, there was an interesting article regarding youth and poker/gambling. I certainly do think this is a delicate slippery slope with the phenomenon of poker. All the attention that has been brought to this wonderful game, you certainly have to be aware of how impressionable youth are.
Looking at this year's WSOP, we saw several winners under the age of 25. That is not what I'm worried about, since I'm the same age range. The concern that I have is when my 13-year-old cousin starts talking to me about poker. That is what recently happened on my family vacation. Personally, I'm not too worried about him because all he knows is what he has seen on ESPN and the WPT. Now, he was talking about wanting to play me for money and I had to try and make sense to him that he is too young (way too young) to begin thinking he can play that way. Hell, I've only got a little more than 2 years experience myself and I have a hell of a lot of improving to do. But for this kid to think he is ready to play for some money freaks me out.
Also, if there is a problem out there, it isn't the fault of ESPN or the WPT, etc. The kids that are playing have to be monitored by their parents. The case of the kid in the article, he was playing 14 hours a day, with his parents downstairs and presumably their money. How they let the situation spiral out of control like that is their fault. People have to be responsible for their own actions and not blame television for everything.
I'm curious to what you all think about what this will do on today's youth. It could be nothing more than more money to our bankrolls.
Sean at Anisotropy 2 also had a few takes on the matter.