California can't ban sale of violent games to minors

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    Jun 27, 2011 4:29 PM GMT
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/06/27/supreme-court-violent-video-games_n_884991.html?"No doubt a state possesses legitimate power to protect children from harm," said Justice Antonin Scalia, who wrote the majority opinion. "But that does not include a free-floating power to restrict the ideas to which children may be exposed."

    The California law would have prohibited the sale or rental of violent games to anyone under 18. Retailers who violated the act would have been fined up to $1,000 for each infraction.

    More than 46 million American households have at least one video-game system, with the industry bringing in at least $18 billion in 2010.

    Unlike depictions of "sexual conduct," Scalia said there is no tradition in the United States of restricting children's access to depictions of violence, pointing out the violence in the original depiction of many popular children's fairy tales like Hansel and Gretel, Cinderella and Snow White.


    I actually agree with Scalia from a constitutional standpoint (even though the MD in me is revolted).

    OK, so what about the free-floating power to restrict teachers even mentioning homosexuality in the classroom (or in extracurricular activities)? Not that that's even harmful, mind you. We're not talking about presenting graphic scenes of "sexual conduct" in the classroom, just the fact that some people like the same sex.
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    Jun 27, 2011 8:52 PM GMT
    what a stupid law.....glad they didn't do it.
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    Jun 27, 2011 8:56 PM GMT
    ...which is only right.

    But parents can, and should, "ban" their kids from playing such games.

    If the government banned these games, then violent movies, comic books, novels etc. should be "banned". There's no real difference betrween any of them.

    That said, I would never allow my kids to own and play such games. They do desensitize the kids to violence....but so do some movies, novels, comic books etc.

    Parents, do your job. Don't expect the government to do it.
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    Jun 27, 2011 8:58 PM GMT
    fastprof said...which is only right.

    But parents can, and should, "ban" their kids from playing such games.

    If the government banned these games, then violent movies, comic books, novels etc. should be "banned". There's no real difference betrween any of them.

    That said, I would never allow my kids to own and play such games. They do desensitize the kids to violence....but so do some movies, novels, comic books etc.

    Parents, do your job. Don't expect the government to do it.


    That is for each individual parent to decide.

    Its not the governments, nor is it your job, to tell me what my kid can and cant do.
  • LJay

    Posts: 11612

    Jun 27, 2011 9:01 PM GMT
    Well maybe the state can't ban such games but I can assure you that my Mom could have if there had been computers or video games in those days.

    While I abhor much of the "family values" crap doled out by right-wing religionists, I do respect parents' ability to be parents. I do think that the court made the right decision, but I do encourage parents to do the same when necessary.

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    Jun 27, 2011 9:04 PM GMT
    Chainers saidIts not the governments, nor is it your job, to tell me what my kid can and cant do.


    I wish the government had told you how to use apostrophes :-(
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    Jun 27, 2011 9:06 PM GMT
    TigerTim said
    Chainers saidIts not the governments, nor is it your job, to tell me what my kid can and cant do.


    I wish the government had told you how to use apostrophes :-(


    Thats my parents job, not the governments lol :-)
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    Jun 27, 2011 9:08 PM GMT
    TigerTim said
    Chainers saidIts not the governments, nor is it your job, to tell me what my kid can and cant do.


    I wish the government had told you how to use apostrophes :-(


    Says the guy who neglected to place a period at the end of his sentence........
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    Jun 27, 2011 9:11 PM GMT
    dekiruman said
    TigerTim said
    Chainers saidIts not the governments, nor is it your job, to tell me what my kid can and cant do.


    I wish the government had told you how to use apostrophes :-(


    Says the guy who neglected to place a period at the end of his sentence........


    Says the guy who uses too many dots for ellipses...icon_lol.gif
  • Spiritreaver

    Posts: 2086

    Jun 27, 2011 9:11 PM GMT
    I dunno, I think every 10 year old should get a copy of Dead Space for their birthday. They need to know what a good game is before they get sucked into Shit of Duty: Modern Pastemaker 2034 Xtreme.

    In all seriousness though, it's the parents decision, but I honestly feel that the ESRB rating and just overall attention that violent games get is over-exaggerated.
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    Jun 27, 2011 10:37 PM GMT
    Good decision! It's also good in regards that it 'forces' parents to monitor what their children are playing and seeing. It's not up to the state to decide in a manner of speaking. But irregardless, the most violent shooting game I remember playing while growing up was the eternally-classic Duck Hunt! I miss the days of classic Nintendo and Sega.
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    Jun 27, 2011 11:42 PM GMT
    It should up to the PARENTS, on what they want their children to PLAY and WATCH, Not the law. Even if it does pass some parents would STILL go out and buy those games for their kids anyway
  • shawn06

    Posts: 337

    Jun 27, 2011 11:57 PM GMT
    Thank goodness this got no where. The parents should have the right to decide, the thought of censorship at this level could negatively cripple an industry and it would suck being that this is the industry I plan on working in after college. There is a sense of artistic value in violence whether you believe it or not, it would be like removing the creativity in horror films, comic books, or Art for that matter.

    We have a rating system for a reason, if parents see M for mature and believe their child is incapable of handling the content then they need to not buy it. That simple, just like a movie...
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    Jun 28, 2011 12:03 AM GMT
    Is California becoming the new Mississippi? I've noticed they've been trying to pass a lot of narrow minded and invasive laws lately.
  • matt13226

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    Jun 28, 2011 12:06 AM GMT
    dekiruman saidwhat a stupid law.....glad they didn't do it.


    +1
  • Spiritreaver

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    Jun 28, 2011 12:11 AM GMT
    southbeach1500 saidAll of you agreeing with this decision, would you still feel the same way if the Federal government banned the sale of violent games to minors?

    They do have the authority (apparently) as it could be regulated under the Commerce Clause. Such a ban has precedent because the Federal government has placed a ban on incandescent light bulbs.

    You're all so "pro-choice" in this matter.... but apparently not in others where clearly the Federal government is abridging your right to choose.
    Wait, people have to be one or the other? You mean I can't be pro-choice on one matter and not on another?

    I hardly think lightbulbs can be viewed in the same light as social issues.

    I don't like the government making statements on certain social issues because there's too much of a gray area for one entity to decide on an outcome.

    I think this is the best part about being a human who can think. You don't have to look at things in this black and white mentality, you can agree and disagree and have different opinions on different subjects.
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    Jun 28, 2011 12:59 AM GMT
    There is no outright ban on incandescent bulbs. They just have to meet more stringent energy efficiency standards. Feel free to invent one SB.
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    Jun 28, 2011 1:15 AM GMT
    What about R-rated films? Don't you have to be 17 and over to watch those? Wouldn't this ruling making it unconstitutional to ban the 16 and under crowd from watching those unless they depict sexual content??
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    Jun 28, 2011 1:17 AM GMT
    gawesome saidWhat about R-rated films? Don't you have to be 17 and over to watch those? Wouldn't this ruling making it unconstitutional to ban the 16 and under crowd from watching those unless they depict sexual content??


    I believe that is a policy adhered to by the MPAA and movie theaters. Private entities.
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    Jun 28, 2011 1:21 AM GMT
    gawesome saidWhat about R-rated films? Don't you have to be 17 and over to watch those? Wouldn't this ruling making it unconstitutional to ban the 16 and under crowd from watching those unless they depict sexual content??


    That is a system between the studios, theaters, and dvd distributors. It has nothing to do with laws of the government.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Motion_Picture_Association_of_America_film_rating_system
  • shawn06

    Posts: 337

    Jun 28, 2011 1:22 AM GMT
    gawesome saidWhat about R-rated films? Don't you have to be 17 and over to watch those? Wouldn't this ruling making it unconstitutional to ban the 16 and under crowd from watching those unless they depict sexual content??


    You also do not have to be over 17 if your parents went with you to the movie. Again, a parents decision.
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    Jun 28, 2011 1:26 AM GMT
    southbeach1500 saidAll of you agreeing with this decision, would you still feel the same way if the Federal government banned the sale of violent games to minors?

    They do have the authority (apparently) as it could be regulated under the Commerce Clause. Such a ban has precedent because the Federal government has placed a ban on incandescent light bulbs.

    You're all so "pro-choice" in this matter.... but apparently not in others where clearly the Federal government is abridging your right to choose.


    I think the ship sailed with any sort of federal ban on violent-type content when the Court nixed the federal ban on depictions of animal cruelty. That of course was a free speech case and not a Commerce Clause case.

    However I think the Commerce Clause has been interpreted so far out of its original meaning that anything is possible when Congress tries to use this authority.
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    Jun 28, 2011 1:27 AM GMT
    q1w2e3 saidCalifornia can't ban sale of violent games to minors
    Good. Before video games, kids played shoot'em up games using toy guns. Much less stuff gets broken with video games.
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    Jun 28, 2011 1:32 AM GMT
    southbeach1500 said
    cbdtw79 said
    However I think the Commerce Clause has been interpreted so far out of its original meaning that anything is possible when Congress tries to use this authority.


    Correct.

    The Federal government can tell you to purchase a specific product or service (health insurance) under penalty of law. And it's all A-OK because it's under the "Commerce Clause" (allegedly).





    I agree that is entirely bogus. The Commerce Clause was supposed to prevent states from interfering with the free flow of trade between each other. Of course the New Deal changed all that when the Supreme Court refused to enforce its limits.
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    Jun 28, 2011 1:33 AM GMT
    paulflexes said
    q1w2e3 saidCalifornia can't ban sale of violent games to minors
    Good. Before video games, kids played shoot'em up games using toy guns. Much less stuff gets broken with video games.


    Wait till they confuse the fake virtual gun with the real gun. icon_evil.gif