I am watching the sunrise from the 39th floor of the Trump Taj Mahal in Atlantic City, New Jersey. It is about to be a frigid, rainy December day—a fact that at any other point in the venue’s 24-year history may have negatively affected customer turnout, but today will likely make no difference at all. Outside my window, seagulls caw loudly and recently shuttered casinos, their neon signs now dark—Trump Plaza, Revel, Showboat, Atlantic Club—rise from the empty streets like headstones.
Atlantic City is a graveyard, and the Taj Mahal—conveniently located a few yards east of a funeral parlor—is next in line to be buried, the fifth Atlantic City casino to close in the last year.
It was already half-dead when I arrived here Thursday evening.