Hotel-Casino Security and Big Brother Watching
The Ray Rice left hook at the Revel Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City, NJ is now a hot global news item. Fortunately, this is not just another article about the hoopla surrounding the incident. What is important to committed gamblers is the role the hotel plays for everyone involved. The growing numbers of incidents like this is astonishing. If you don’t know here is the video and some background on what went down.I like to say that a casino may be the best place to keep your money, in the physical sense. With the millions of people who bring along their cash money to one of these adult fun and entertainment centers, very few thefts or robberies make the local or national news. We know that every negative casino story possible will be used by major media news outlets to undermine our gaming pleasure, so it is not for a lack of trying on their part. With the massive number of cameras and security measures in place, a casino may be better secured than a bank. Of course, a casino is not FDIC insured.
What the Ray Rice incident brings out is the legal ramifications anyone can encounter with any of their actions when the place is a hotel-casino environment. This applies to a lesser degree to non-hotel casinos since most people are there for hours, not days or weeks. The idea of Big Brother being created by government may not be as realistic a concern as what has existed in many hotel-casinos for years. Every action, whether in an elevator or hallway, is subject to the watchful eye of the owners – all in the name of security.
Personally, I do not engage in any bizarre or illegal behavior when staying the night. Well, not that I am aware of *wink*. So the cameras are not an issue for me. But there are many others who are funnier people and will do things that enter the gray areas of being legally or morally acceptable in a public venue. The problem is that those actions are available for scrutiny by whoever has a good lawyer and a legal (or political) axe to grind. This does not justify illegal or immoral behaviors. It is just that my private errors in judgment, regardless of my state of intoxication or celebration, should not be available for viewing in a public forum.
Again speaking for myself, I like the presence of those cameras for the purposes of keeping my money and me safe. Actually, my money more than myself since in general I do not worry about my personal safety in most public places I choose to go to. Paying attention to the people around me and those who seem to circle like vultures around my machine or general area when at the tables is too hard after I have been gambling for 12 hours straight.
Now there are those who would argue that the cameras in a casino are not for protection of the players, but to protect the casino’s financial interests. There is no denying this but it seems that the reason there is money to be had is because there are people there with money to spend. Think of it as protecting your investment with a serious layer of security.
The question is where does player safety turn into unwanted surveillance. If you can always go into your hotel room where you are guaranteed escape from the roaming eyes, then what about the time being recorded when you put the key in your door to enter the room? Or who you enter the room with? Or how many times you come and go into that perceived bastion of privacy? The problem with the camera is that is only sees what it sees, and not what happens out of its sight.
This is the problem with too many eyes watching too closely. What may appear to be a questionable action may have a very simple explanation, like the time I forgot what I went into the hallway for 3 times in a row. The only way for the action to become unquestionable is for someone to ask us. That means we will be under the presumption of doing something wrong when in fact we are as innocent as a newborn. But that fact does not matter to the camera or those watching. It is presume wrongdoing first and apologize later.
The recipient of Ray Rice’s left hook publicly stated that the altercation was a personal matter that is between her and him. Most people disagreed, stating that he was a public figure making millions, or that it was a matter for the police. Yet another question to be asked is what if the camera was not there at all? Then both their actions would be a private matter with the exception of the two security people who were there. No story to report.
Every time you walk into a hotel-casino, remember this story and how the hotel camera recorded the incident from beginning to end. Well, almost the end. It should be noted that what wasn’t recorded, or at least made public, is the walk back to their room. Would have loved to see that…