My policy on the lottery is that it's a stupid tax.
I don't think that we shouldn't have a lottery. I don't have much of an opinion on gambling in general (I honestly don't care one way or another about legalization, though I do think if it's left a crime it should be one of those we just don't bother prosecuting).
This, however, rubs me the wrong way.
It's not that I think we shouldn't have it per se, it's just...Well, here's the money quote:
After the usual deduction for prizes and other costs, 23 percent of ticket proceeds will go to the Permanent Fund for Veterans' Assistance for such services as transportation to veterans hospitals, counseling and housing for homeless veterans.It's a $2 ticket. So 46¢ from each ticket will go into this fund. It will, I have no doubt, work exactly as advertised. They may even be correct to say that it will inject $9M into the fund. And that's a good thing. But, well, I'd much rather give my $2 to them directly...and so I think I'll skip the scratch-off tickets (that, well, I wouldn't buy anyway) and do what I can locally.
ETA: Huh, found a good answer further down: Toy Drive to Benefit Military Families. Here's Operation Homefront's Texas chapter. Of course, there are beaucoup other opportunities; Blackfive has a good run-down. Any of these, I think, would be better than paying the stupid tax.