L.A. Times Asks State to Let a Bad Law Die

Illustration for article titled L.A. Times Asks State to Let a Bad Law Die

Calling California's violent video games law "an embarrassment," the L.A. Times says the state shouldn't create another by appealing its overturning to the U.S. Supreme Court.


The Times pointed out the law's obvious flaws - too broadly defined, zero causal link between violent games and the harms claimed, etc., before winding up with the common sense that seems to flee this sort of debate whenever it gets into a statehouse:

The primary responsibility for protecting minors from potentially harmful influences lies with parents, as it did long before video games were a twinkle in a programmer's eye. Parents don't need a law to urge makers of video games to strengthen their current voluntary ratings systems. More important, they don't need permission from a legislator or judge to keep an eye on what their children are doing - or playing.

Remember, the law didn't ban violent games, just required their labeling and stiffened fines for selling them to minors. It still fell short of justifying any prior restraint of free expression.

The state's struggling with cutbacks to balance a budget that was $50 zillion in the hole, and the worst drought in a generation is expected later this year. Plus Brown's tangled up in the Prop. 8 appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court. This stupid law should not be anywhere near a priority.

Violent Video Games: who Controls the Joystick? [Los Angeles Times via GamePolitics


Benguin the Albatross

I live in California and I honestly do not understand all the noise over this law.

Maybe I just don't know all the facts, but the way I understand it is that the law just tries to keep minors from buying M-rated games. So? Same thing as seeing an R-rated movie. I don't see people all up in arms over that.

Are gamers so sensitive that suddenly any law concerning video games is an assault on the hobby as a whole?