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Illinois Gov. Seeks Violent Video Game Ban 651

Posted by Zonk
from the oh-those-wacky-flatlanders dept.
Foobar_Zen writes "Gov. Rod Blagojevich of Illinois has apparently decided to build on past "wins". He seeks to impose legislation that will prohibit the distribution, sale, rental and availability of mature video games to children younger than 18. Breaking of this law would be punishable by up to one year in prison or a $5,000 fine." From the article: "The Illinois Retail Merchants Association blasted the governor's proposal as a way for retailers to become "the violence and sensitivity police for the state of Illinois." Update: 12/16 21:14 GMT by Z : Lum's take on this over at Broken Toys is excellent.
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Illinois Gov. Seeks Violent Video Game Ban

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  • America's Army (Score:5, Insightful)

    by justforaday (560408) on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:05PM (#11107633)
    I'd like to see how this is handled if some kid downloads America's Army...
    • Re:America's Army (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Stripe7 (571267) on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:11PM (#11107725)
      Given that a recent survey has pointed out that nusery rhymes had more violent content than video games, I think he has to ban them as well. He should also ban all news channels for showing the violence in Iraq and American Cities. Add to that banning all the violent Saturday Morning kids programming, ie Power Rangers, Spider Man, X-Men, etc.. which all depict violent acts of one sort of another.
      • He should also ban all news channels for showing the violence in Iraq

        The network news already censors out all the really violent stuff. Heaven forbid war should make any of the home viewers squeamish.

      • Re:America's Army (Score:5, Informative)

        by iminplaya (723125) <iminplaya.gmail@com> on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:26PM (#11107990) Journal
        Nursery rhymes?? Jeez. If anybody wants violence, they just have to read the Bible. You'll get plenty of violence right there in the first book(Genesis). It's all downhill from there. There's murder, war, anger, rage, jealousy, envy, hate, mayhem, you name it. Once again, somebody's trying to distract people from other much more serious problems. And once again, it will work. It's like a guy that buys flowers for his girlfriend to make her forget that he cheated on her last light. That usually works also.
      • Re:America's Army (Score:5, Informative)

        by chuck (477) on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:52PM (#11108307) Homepage
        Let's try to put things in perspective. A billion jillion kids read violent books, and play violent games. Why aren't there mass killings by the milliions? Maybe children need that for their psychological growth:

        Killing Monsters Why Children Need Fantasy, Super Heroes, and Make-Believe Violence [amazon.com]

        Finally a reasonable look at children and violent fantasy. A must-read for retarded old governors and senators.

      • Re:America's Army (Score:3, Informative)

        by Ironsides (739422)
        Given that a recent survey has pointed out that nusery rhymes had more violent content than video games

        DOn't forget that todays nursey rhymes are quite toned down from the originals. Read the original uncensored brothers grim and its alot mroe violent. Especially what they do in Red Riding Hood (Hint, One of the things they do is the wolf dies by drowning)
    • Re:America's Army (Score:5, Insightful)

      by cbr2702 (750255) on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:17PM (#11107842) Homepage
      AA is rated Teen. So no worries; a Teen game could hardly desensitize our youth to killing and other violence.
    • I'd like to see how this is handled if some kid downloads America's Army...

      I am not familiar with that game, but I can comment about the whole on-line thing. What Illinois can do is regulate Illinois ISP's. They can tell ISP's to block mature content unless a customer asks for it.

      The other course of action is to have a federal law. Maybe there is a lawyer here who can comment on the interstate commerce clause of the constitution (the part of the constitution that gives congress the power to regulate AL

    • Seriously, this is pure gold. Games that involve killing people in a pretend universe = bad. Games that actively advocate killing people for a living in the real world = patriotic?!

    • Re:America's Army (Score:3, Insightful)

      by fermion (181285)
      One of the silliest presentations I have seen lately was the study of an ex-military official study that tried to link the violent video games to the violence on the streets. He had a point that the video games use some the same desentivsation techniques that the military uses, but lost it when he asserted that the techniques would be equally effective when presented as a game rather than by a drill sargent.

      Of course, no mention was made of the fact that when the kids turn on the TV the US is once agian

  • Availability? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by SoTuA (683507) on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:06PM (#11107649)
    If I, as a parent, decide that my under-18 child is fit to play the game, buy it (since the store can't sell it or rent it to him/her) and give it to him/her, am I breaking the law?
    • Re:Availability? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Maul (83993) on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:09PM (#11107702) Journal
      Not yet, but I imagine that it soon will be. The Government thinks it is a better parent than you and knows what is best for your family.
    • Re:Availability? (Score:3, Informative)

      by Nos. (179609)

      I don't know the exact wording of the law, but I doubt it. I think this would work the same way movies work (at least here in Canada). No, a 16 year old can't get into the latest R rated flick, however, if they are accompanied by a parent/guardian they can. Its the same for rentals as well.

      I'll have to check, but I think the same circumstances apply to alcohol, though that is regulated provincially here. I seem to remember being told that an underage person can drink if the alcohol is supplied by a par

    • No, because YOU are buying the game.

      (already thinking about kids, eh?)
      • No, because YOU are buying the game.

        Yes, but after I bought it I made it available to underaged kids. That's why my post is titled "availability".

        (already thinking about kids, eh?)

        Not this year, not the next... maybe 2006 or 2007? :)

    • Re:Availability? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Auckerman (223266) on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:19PM (#11107872)
      "If I, as a parent, decide that my under-18 child is fit to play the game, buy it (since the store can't sell it or rent it to him/her) and give it to him/her, am I breaking the law?"

      Which is the only relevant question. I really have a hard time imagining WHY people could object to this. Any law that empowers parents to raise their children, within the bounds that limit abuse, is a good law. Under common law, and iirc, written law, in the States, children are classified somewhere between a slave and a citizen. They do NOT have full rights of an adult citizen, but have rights that are clearly spelled out. The "right" to do what you want without your parents permission is not one of them.

      Yes, of course parents can't always watch over their kids. They are going to get access to unwanted media when they are outside the view of their parents, including video games that they aren't "allowed" to play, but at least the parent has a little more control.

      Personally, I think laws like this should be extended to include ALL media (games, books) should be bought by people over an age defined by the individual state (perhaps one state wants it set at 15 and another at 18) as long as that age does NOT exceed 18 or exclude emancipated teenagers.
      • Re:Availability? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by SoTuA (683507) on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:28PM (#11108020)
        But you miss the point. My question is: "If making a mature-rated video game available to a minor is a crime, is buying my under-18 son a mature-rated video game against the law, even if as his parent I decide that he is mature enough to understand that it is a game?".

        If the answer is yes, the law doesn't empower me, it takes away from me the right to decide what is fit for my children and what is not. It means the gov't meddling in my child-raising, which I wouldn't appreciate.

        • Re:Availability? (Score:3, Informative)

          by Metapsyborg (754855)
          Jesus, for someone who is soooo concerned about your rights as a parent, you don't even RTFA? All that is being discussed in the law is an enforcement of the labeling system for videogames. From the VERY first sentence: "Gov. Rod Blagojevich is proposing to make it a misdemeanor for businesses to sell violent and sexually explicit video games to minors, a step that other states have tried with little success."

          I don't see how this could possibly be a problem; it's not like we let our kids buy porn and guns.

        • Re:Availability? (Score:3, Informative)

          by MBraynard (653724)
          Yeah he did answer your question, but your IQ isn't smart enough to see it in his post. The law clearly is about making sure that you are the one making the decision for your minor dependant. That is exactly what the parent favors.
    • In the UK, no... (Score:5, Informative)

      by lxt (724570) on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:30PM (#11108039) Journal
      In the UK, we already have a similar system. Some computer games are rated by the BBFC (the violent ones - non violent games are not usually rated by them), and are given the same ratings to those applied to films and videos. Although the system is not perfect, it allows for some degree of control. As an example, games such as Manhunt are given 18 ratings, with Quake III getting a 15 etc. Of course, this still doesn't stop the occasionaly press frenzy over violent games and children (...suspiciously familiar in tone to the "video nasties are corrupting us" 20 years ago...)

      The laws only apply to sale and distribution - for example, it's illegal for a minor to buy an 18 rated game, but it's perfectly fine for their parents (if they think it's sutiable) to buy it on their behalf, and them allow them to play it, as you suggest.
  • by stecoop (759508) on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:06PM (#11107652) Journal
    Who are they going to procecute if someone plays one of those *bad* games online where you don't even install it.
  • by supersloth (446769) on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:07PM (#11107660) Homepage
    ... than doing the job of parents?
  • by Tackhead (54550) on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:08PM (#11107674)
    > The Illinois Retail Merchants Association blasted the governor's proposal as a way for retailers to become "the violence and sensitivity police for the state of Illinois."

    "Blasted"? Poor choise of words, IRMA.

    I guess we know who's next on the Governor's world-o'-peace-love-and-fluffy-bunnies-or-else hitlist.

  • by DeDmeTe (678464) on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:08PM (#11107678)
    I don;t see the problem with this legislation. It's just like the R rating at theaters, or the fact that kids can't buy tobacco until 18, or beer until 21. I certainly woulnd't want my kids to (at age 9) walk into a store and buy GTA 8: Be a Porn Star. When he's 18, or I decide to buy it for him.. fine.
    • There's already a game ratings system [esrb.org]....
    • Yeah, lets have the video store act as the parent.

      People need to take responsibility into their own hands and stop trying to force the government to be responsible for our children. I have kids too, and you can be damn sure I know what they are watching or playing at my house. Now my kid can go to a friends and play GTA, but I hope that I taught him well enough that he knows the difference between whats real and fake.

      Me parenting my kids. What a novel concept.
      • how's the store taking responsibility for acting as a parent? if the store clerk sees a video game that has a big "M" in bright orange on it, he says, "can i see some id?" if the kid can't produce proper id, they don't get to buy it. same goes for alcohol, cigarettes and even movies already.

        now that i think of it, maybe they'll need to rename it "the bureau of alcohol, tabacoo, fire arms and video games."

    • by Logan_Fu (534139) on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:17PM (#11107846)
      I don't see a problem, per se, with limiting sales and rentals of M rated games to children under 17, as the "M" rating is equivalent to an "R" for a motion picture. But, I think that a year in jail for renting a kid a copy of the new Prince of Persia game is a bit harsh. That said, there is no way that this law, even if it passes, will get past the courts, since it's so poorly written. Here's why: In Criminal Law there are what is known as "Strict Liability Statutes". These statutes are written to basically regulate the flow of traffic, commerce, and modern issues that were introduced after most of the common law was already laid down. See, most actual crimes require an act, and a criminal state of mind. The Strict Liability Statutes are the exception - they require only an act. This law is a Strict Liability Statute. The courts have said on numerous occassions, that if a piece of legislation is going to get rid of the mens rea (criminal mind) component of a crime, that piece of legislation needs to have a very minor punishment (usually a small to moderate fine) that will attach no "stigma" to the one violating it. Well, a year in jail is a pretty major "stigma" to have to bear. Dumbass legislators have, on many occassions, tried to pass these Strict Liability Statutes with long jail sentences, and almost always, they've been overturned. This bill is doomed before it's even signed.
      • Dumbass legislators have, on many occassions, tried to pass these Strict Liability Statutes with long jail sentences, and almost always, they've been overturned.

        The one place they have generally been sucessful, however, is when the strict liability concerns "sex and violence," to the extent that what would otherwise be an act of consensual sex is legally defined as a violent act.

        People get funny about some issues.

        In this case, however, I think you're right, as the issue rubs hard against the First Ammen
    • IIRC, the R-ratings at movie theaters are a movie industry policy. There's no _law_ enforcing it per se.

      I guess the issue is the link between harm and video games. There is quite a bit of scientific reason to believe that alcohol and tobacco are _harmful_ substances which poison and/or kill you when not taken in appropriate doses. The science is not really there on the video game issue - we don't _know_ whether it has harmful effects even when taken in "massive doses". That is why the age restriction is pr
    • by GimmeFuel (589906) on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:18PM (#11107863) Homepage
      It's just like the R rating at theaters, or the fact that kids can't buy tobacco until 18, or beer until 21.

      How's that working out, by the way? I assume no one under 17 watches R-rated movies in theaters, no one under 18 smokes, and people under 21 have never even tasted alcohol...

    • The difference is the clear evidence that other things can be harmful for children, while video games have not been proven (at least not yet) to cause children to become violent.

      You show a kid movies like Rambo, the Godfather, or Scarface, hes gonna grow up to be violent. Monkey see, monkey do. We've have scientific evidence proving this.

      On the other hand you give a kid the controller to a game like GTA:SA what evidence is there that the kid is going to grow up to be a violent, gun-toting, car stealing gan

    • I don;t see the problem with this legislation. It's just like the R rating at theaters, or the fact that kids can't buy tobacco until 18, or beer until 21. I certainly woulnd't want my kids to (at age 9) walk into a store and buy GTA 8: Be a Porn Star. When he's 18, or I decide to buy it for him.. fine.

      Your right, its very similar to the R rating at theaters which have been in existence since 1966 without any legislation involved.

      The problem is that this is something that does not need to involve the gov
  • by Hatta (162192) on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:08PM (#11107687) Journal
    Kids don't buy games, they warez them. This is a broken solution to a problem that doesn't exist.
  • by garcia (6573) * on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:08PM (#11107689) Homepage
    "We already place limits on alcohol, tobacco, even adult movies. It's just logical that video games, which are so heavily marketed to young kids but many of which contain adult images, should not be available to young people or to minors," Ottenhoff said.

    Ok, I see the connection with adult movies (and I'm talking about porn, not R rated movies) but I cannot see how they think this can cross over into alcohol and tobacco territory!

    Alcohol and tobacco are PHYSICALLY HARMFUL. You can die from alcohol and tobacco. You *cannot* die from abuse of video games... Explicit or otherwise.

    On a personal note: Yes, video games showing full frontal nudity or realistic depictions of death (and when I say this I mean watching actual video clips of people being tortured, decapitated, etc) should be looked into as we do with movies... But video games showing a completely unrealistic depiction of human characters (as real as video games are looking they are still not 100% on) in a fantasy world should be treated as such.

    I thought that as we matured as a society that this type of conservative bullshit would cease. Perhaps we are regressing?
    • Garcia wrote:

      "video games are NOT physically harmful!"


      I suppose you've never been clubbed upside the head with an NES cartridge?

    • by hackstraw (262471) * on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:45PM (#11108213)
      I thought that as we matured as a society that this type of conservative bullshit would cease. Perhaps we are regressing?

      If you haven't noticed by the flags and ribbons on people's cars, we are a nation under stress, and when people are under stress and have no way of eleviating that stress they look towards others to do it for them.

      Also, the greater the stress and disparity, the more controlling and totalitarian leaders and their actions are sought out.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    In communist Illinois, Duke Nukem Forevers YOU!
  • Good! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by cexshun (770970) on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:09PM (#11107697) Homepage

    I don't see anything wrong with requiring a consumer to be 18 to purchase a game marked mature. I think it's a good idea to require proof of age when purchasing games marked AO or Mature by the ERSB.

    If anything, this puts responsibility back onto the parents. You can't blame you're kid shooting someone on video games if the parents have to buy them for them.

    • So now you can work in a slaughter house at age 15 but it's illegal to buy video games depicting the killing of animals until age 18.
  • And let the kids get out and get some fresh air.. It wont prevent psychopaths go out and kill people, but at least he wont get to kill a whole generation just by walking into a computer-cafe :)
  • Ridiculous (Score:5, Insightful)

    by stratjakt (596332) on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:10PM (#11107718) Journal
    Absolutely ridiculous the way video games are the scapegoat for this generation.

    Remember Judas Priest , Ozzy, et al being sued back in the 80s because their satanic lyrics caused all of the problems with young kids today?

    Remember when it was Dungeons and Dragons?

    The people are idiots though, if the movie and recording industries can police themselves (MPAA ratings / "explicit lyrics" stickers), whats the problem with the (incredibly coherent) ESRB rating system?

    And once again, games are created for and marketed to adults, primarily 18-40 year old males. Just go google for any statistics (Nielson, etc) on who plays/buys games if you dont believe me.

    The "think about the children" argument is a red herring. This is all about appeasing Hollywood by helping eliminate the competition. Pure pork. And politicians think it's win-win because it'll get them a lot of "cranky old bitch" votes.
  • "We already place limits on alcohol, tobacco, even adult movies. It's just logical that video games, which are so heavily marketed to young kids but many of which contain adult images, should not be available to young people or to minors," Ottenhoff said.

    I am suprised these laws don't already exsist. When I was young, it was damn hard to find a playboy or anything fun.

    I think what they should try and eliminate is the violence in video games. There have been studies in universities which shows links be

    • And I expect some will say "It must be the parents who decide what their kids can do". To them I would say, check out the lower middle class where both parents work, and the kid has nothing but a tv set and playstation.

      I'm sorry but it isn't up to the Government to decide how a child is raised. If the blue collar family that you so *ignorantly* described wants to babysit their children in that manner, so be it.

      It isn't society's place to dictate to individuals how they should raise their children. It c
      • I'm sorry but it isn't up to the Government to decide how a child is raised. If the blue collar family that you so *ignorantly* described wants to babysit their children in that manner, so be it.

        Then what would you want to have happen? How do you give *that* child a good shot for a good future? If both parents work, who is there to look out for the kids?? Companies certainly don't care about the wellbeing of the kid, they just want to make money.

  • by nicpottier (29824) on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:11PM (#11107740)
    The /. one that is. Ban? What?

    Hello, how is this different than R-rated movies today? Mature games are intended for a mature audience and you better believe we shouldn't have 8 year olds playing GTA3 unless their parents approve of it and buy it for them.

    What's the crazy backlash to this? It's absolutely sound to set up laws prohibiting sales of these games to minors (just as it prohibits sales of pr0n to minors).

    If parents choose that their kids are mature enough for said games then they'll go and buy it for their kids. If not, then kids won't be playing games that they likely aren't ready for.

    -Nic
    • It is different because it is not illegal to allow people under the age of 17 into an R rated movie. Movie ratings are a purely voluntary industry-driven system (put into place because they were scared of laws like this, mind you).

      If you can't trust your children to not go purchase a game you told them not to buy, then I think you need to deal with your parenting problems, rather than the government "taking care" of your children.

      • If you can't trust your children to not go purchase a game you told them not to buy, then I think you need to deal with your parenting problems, rather than the government "taking care" of your children.

        Oh whatever, this is so naive as to be laughable.

        Take a step back for a bit. Ok, take a deep breath. Now try, I know it's hard, but just try to get your one sided mind to look at the other side for a bit.

        What are the downsides to this law? Really, I'm waiting.

        The video game manufacturers themselves h
    • Hello, how is this different than R-rated movies today? [...]
      What's the crazy backlash to this? It's absolutely sound to set up laws prohibiting sales of these games to minors (just as it prohibits sales of pr0n to minors).

      I'm not up on current movie laws but as far as I know (and as far as a 5 minute google search yielded) you can't be sent to jail or fined by the government (i.e. courts) for allowing a minor to view/rent/buy an R rated movie.

      Now there may be penalties at the theater/store level, you m

  • Didn't some federal judge already shoot down a similar law in another state recently as unconstitutional and discriminatory?
  • by zod1025 (189215) <zod@modernw[ ]rdry.org ['iza' in gap]> on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:12PM (#11107749) Homepage
    I particularly love this quote:

    "We already place limits on alcohol, tobacco, even adult movies. It's just logical that video games, which are so heavily marketed to young kids but many of which contain adult images, should not be available to young people or to minors," Ottenhoff said.

    Methinks he subscribes to different logic than I.

    The answer, of course, is to do nothing - allow the Invisible Hand of the Market to continue to do its work, driven by parents' enforcements of what little Johnny can and can't buy.

    • "The answer, of course, is to do nothing - allow the Invisible Hand of the Market to continue to do its work,

      The invisible hand of the market would have 16 year olds consuming vast quantities of hard liquor and probably driving around afterwards. Not that this doesn't happen anyway but imagine if you weren't impeded by the need a fake id as a kid, I probably wouldn't even be here.
  • There's a link to a blog about how this guy is Satan's brother-in-law, and then the submitter accuses him of trying to "impose legislation".

    At least here in the South[1], our state governor doesn't "impose" legislation on us. He tries to get it into legislature to vote on, and our legislature is composed of _elected_ officials. I've heard it's a similar story up north. I don't know why the submitter has a hard-on for disparaging his governor, but it puts his entire summary of the issue into doubt, since he
  • Micro-Rant (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Speare (84249) on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:14PM (#11107780) Homepage Journal

    My stock micro-rant on this topic is mostly just a quotation.

    • Federal Judge Richard Posner, 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, had this to say about 'protecting our kids':
      • Now that eighteen-year-olds have the right to vote, it is obvious that they must be allowed the freedom to form their political views on the basis of uncensored speech before they turn eighteen, so that their minds are not a blank when they first exercise the franchise. And since an eighteen-year-old's right to vote is a right personal to him rather than a right to be exercised on his behalf by his parents, the right of parents to enlist the aid of the state to shield their children from ideas of which the parents disapprove cannot be plenary either. People are unlikely to become well- functioning, independent-minded adults and responsible citizens if they are raised in an intellectual bubble.

      • --American Amusement Machine Assoc. v. Kendrick No. 00-3643 (7th Cir., March 23, 2001)
      Any elected government, be it Democracy, or Representative Republic, or otherwise, owes it to their constituents to allow unfettered access to ideas and information, praiseworthy or critical. To deny a citizen the right to know their own world is to deny them identity.
  • Do they seek a ban on violent video games?

    Or do they seek to violently ban video games?

    I hope they clear that up before issuing orders to law enforcement.
  • Ridiculous (Score:3, Interesting)

    by bLindmOnkey (744643) on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:14PM (#11107790)
    What these people must realize is that many violent videogames e.g. WWII games are based on the real world, even if just for entertainment's sake. GTA reflects high crimes in a fictional city that highly resembles some of the US ones. Of course, these aren't meant to be taken AS fact and never really are. One of the major misconceptions about violent videogames is that reality is based on them and they have an overwhelming influence on children over reality, but this just isn't true. The first violent game I remember playing was Doom, but that didn't make me want to go out and shoot people. Videogames are based on reality, not the other way around
  • Illinois (Score:2, Offtopic)

    by Otter (3800)
    Hey, you've got to love a state where the Republican candidate for the Senate gets in a sex scandal with his own wife! (That'd be Seven of Nine, by the way, for those unfamiliar with the story.)
  • Blagojevich Is Evil (Score:3, Informative)

    by LegendOfLink (574790) on Thursday December 16, 2004 @02:15PM (#11107801) Homepage

    As a resident of the Chicago area, I have to say, it seems like Blagojevich is out to destroy business in Illinois. First raising the tolls for truck drivers, and now he's about to cripple the video game business in Illinois!

    This guy has had tons of static from the Illinois Congress regarding many issues such as passing the budget and getting medicine from Canada! I hope they fight him tooth and nail on this one too.

    Plus, this will hurt more than just video game retailers. What about arcades? Is he just going to put an age limit on who can get in there because of game violence? Most of the people in arcades are under the age of 18 anyways.

  • Innmate #1: Agrevated Assult on a police officer. Lawyer says I'll be out in 9 months. You?

    Innmate #2: Doin 12 straight for selling Halo to a 17 year old. Apparently, he was planning a lan party.

    Somebody tell me why we would ever need to put people in prision over this?
  • [sarcasm]If someone under the age of 18 buys a violent video game, send them to jail where they'll learn to behave like angels, because those inmates will be a great influence on them.[/sarcasm] Or $5000? Yeah, make them work instead of getting an education, or take their life savings away that would've helped pay for college.

    Yeah, that's a brilliant plan.

  • I enjoy a wide range of video games and other media. While I believe most adults are capable of consuming such without severe ill effects, I do question whether we are doing enough to prevent violent video games from falling into the hands of children, who are not necessarily able to reconcile what they see in a video game in a proper context (in other words, properly separate fantasy from reality.)

    This is not a perception that many people are prepared to accept. A recent survey revealed that while eigh

  • ....

    Boy who cried wolf, meet gamers who cried censorship.
  • Here: "Gov. Blagojevich proposes bill to make Illinois first state to prohibit sale or distribution of violent and sexually explicit video games to minors [illinois.gov]"

    The release states that the two proposed bills (one for violence, one for sex) will ban "the distribution, sale, rental and availability of violent video games to children younger than 18" [emphasis mine]. Are they going to charge parents who don't keep their "M"-rated games in locked gun-cabinet-style safes with making these games available to minors?

  • Uummm.. Can you say practicaly unenforcable? The only way anyone is gonna get fined is by a kid buying the game, a parent getting pissed and then wrongfully placing the blame on the retailer instead of the kid. Just take the game away! Not everything is someone else's fault!
  • Maybe this will help curb the number of 13 year olds who think it's cool to be annoying as hell with the voice chat in Counter Strike.
  • prohibit the distribution, sale, rental and availability of mature video games to children younger than 18

    How exactly is this a bad thing? Children under 18 do not, and should not, enjoy the same rights as an adult. They can't buy liquor. They can't buy cigarettes. They can't buy a gun. They can't buy an X-rated DVD.

    Why should video games be treated any differently? Some games are simply "adult-oriented" material.

    If a product is rated M, it shouldn't be available to a child unless their parent

  • Since kids can always fall back on
    • Playing Doctor
    • Playing Cowboys and Indians or "Army"

    to get their sex and violence fix....cause all those years of your parents and your parents' parents playing those games have created generations of subhuman immoral monsters, right?

  • I don't get it (Score:3, Insightful)

    by kaffiene (38781) on Thursday December 16, 2004 @04:03PM (#11109109)
    I don't understand the attitude displayed on this topic. If you have an R18 film containing sex and or violence, you expect that selling it to a 13 year old will get you fined (if anyone finds out).

    Given that video games have ratings as well (or should be rated) what's suprising about people wanting to enforce those ratings? It seems an exactly analagous situation to me.

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