It was reported yesterday that the final winners (3 of 3) of the record setting $656 million Mega Million lottery drawing have come forward. The lucky winners are Merle and Patricia Butler or Red Bud, Illinois.
Their share of the jackpot comes out to a hefty $218.6 million.
Read NY Post story here.
My question is why do we even know these people’s names? Why do all of these big Mega and Powerball winners come forward and go on TV? I’m not an expert on the Lottery, so is there a rule that if you win one of these obscene jackpots, you must come forward and reveal yourself to the entire world?
This has always bugged me – and I just don’t get it!
Isn’t revealing that you’ve just won almost a quarter of a billion dollars a bit of a security risk? Wouldn’t that type of news make you a target for every two-bit criminal? Not to mention long-lost sixth cousins, long-forgotten kindergarten classmates, ex-girlfriends/boyfriends, and just about every other kind of opportunistic creep.
What exactly is the upside of revealing your identity? Again, is there some fine print on the ticket that requires one to do so?
I know that if I were lucky enough to win that kind of money, not many people on this planet would know about it – not if I could help it. I would tell the lottery officials to fork over my moolah and be done with it. If I felt generous towards people’s curiosity I would hire an attorney to attend the press conference on my behalf and say: ‘my clients are extremely happy to have won this enormous amount of money. They are looking forward to enjoying their winnings and donating some money to various animal shelters and other worthy causes. But they choose to remain anonymous. Everyone has a right to privacy. Thank you.’
That’s all they would get from me!
I wish Mr. and Mrs. Butler all the luck in the world, but they should never return to their home in Red Bud which is less than an hour’s drive from downtown St. Louis. Sell the house and disappear into thin air with your family and live happily ever after.