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Illinois Gaming Law KOed, Appeal Planned

Ill. Governor to Appeal Video Game Ruling reports that a federal judge has ruled unconstitutional Illinois' recently passed law that banned the sale of violent or sexually explicit video games to minors:

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. - Gov. Rod Blagojevich vowed to appeal a federal judge's ruling that shot down a new Illinois law banning the sale of violent or sexual video games to minors.

U.S. District Court Judge Matthew Kennelly ruled Friday that Illinois' restrictions are unconstitutional and barred the state from enforcing the law.

The Democratic governor and other supporters of the measure have argued that children were being harmed by exposure to games in which characters go on killing sprees or sexual escapades.

"This battle is not over," Blagojevich said in a statement. "Parents should be able to expect that their kids will not have access to excessively violent and sexually explicit video games without their permission."

Kennelly said state officials came "nowhere near" demonstrating that the law passes constitutional muster.

Opponents had declared the law a restriction on free speech and pointed out that similar laws had been struck down in other states.

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67 Replies. 4 pages. Viewing page 3.
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27. Re: No subject Dec 4, 2005, 03:40 Awesome Spume
 
I'm always amazed how the USA, supposed "land of the free", a country whose entire society is based on freedom always seems so willing to give up it's freedoms so easily...

There's no such thing as individual rights. Every little thing that you take for granted as a right impacts on somebody else in some way. The whole concept of freedom is bogus. As a society we accept certain curtailments of our rights as a condition of membership in that society. Show me someone crying about their rights and I will run a mile because anyone that bone-headed is dangerous to be around.


 
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26. Re: No subject Dec 4, 2005, 03:34 Awesome Spume
 
Like I said, I don't have children, and I enjoy the rights of a full fledged adult, so I think maybe my general views will be different from a parent's.

But the scary thing is the parents (Hump anyway) seem to think it's okay to sell the game to their kids, naively assuming they will have the power to enforce what games their kids will be playing when they get it home. Preventing stores from selling mature-themed games to minors only enforces a parents rights because it means a parent has to get involved in buying those games for their children. Complaining about this and shouting about your right to parent a child according to your own views just sounds like "I can't be arsed to go to the store and see what games my kid wants to play". Rights? Irresponsible more like.

And as Dagok has pointed out over scores of threads - banning mature games sales to minors takes away the very air breathed by zealots like Jack Thompson. The only people who should see a ban on sales as a bad thing are those under 18 (which, let me say, is a ridiculous cutoff age in the first place. It would be 15-17 in most of Europe.) Parents complaining about it is just depressing as hell and symptomatic of the malaise afflicting child-rearing in the 1st world in the 21st century.


 
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25. Re: No subject Dec 4, 2005, 03:31 McSeb
 
Let's take counter-strike as an example then, watch someone play CS for 5-10 minutes online and I'm sure you will see someone get shot, someone get tagged and if you watch long enough probably some trash-talk in the voicechat. Do you really need your kid to tell you that it's, as you put it "a murder simulator" ?

If you think your kid is able to understand the difference between the game and reality and you feel confident that your kid can make good decisions about what he plays then your kid should be legally allowed to.

If you are worried that this will have a negative effect on your kid, then don't let him have it or play it. Suggest an alternative, there are many games out there which don't have the violence and/or sex (speaking of which, aside from the GTAs who do it on purpose to piss people off, can anyone think of a game that isn't crap with sex in it ?!?) and there is a wonderful self-imposed industry rating system which, aside from Rockstar, is well respected by the whole industry.

P.S.: I say all this but I'm canadian, these laws don't even apply up here yet I feel angry about the stupidity of all this. I'm always amazed how the USA, supposed "land of the free", a country whose entire society is based on freedom always seems so willing to give up it's freedoms so easily... "Freedom !, Freedom ! ... but we the people think we are too stupid to make smart decisions, please mr. government, tell us if we can have gun, if we can have abortions, if we can play a video game, with your permission of course..." What's next, giving up the right to vote for your leaders ?!?!

 
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24. Re: No subject Dec 4, 2005, 03:22 Awesome Spume
 
Think of it this way. Parents are free to take their kids to Neo-Nazi rallies or KKK cross burnings. There's no law against that.

Maybe there should be.


 
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23. No subject Dec 4, 2005, 03:22 Masa
 
I guess maybe not being a parent (nor married) and being over the ages of 18 and 21 my view won't be the same as a parent's. To me, the ESRB rating on the box corresponds to the type of content within the game, and distribute accordingly. AO and Mature rated games you provide proof of age; if you can't, the sale won't commence. That may be too simple, but people are throwing around the 1st Amendment and "someone else raising my kids" like water. I just don't see how this is that different than sale of movies, IMHO.

Like I said, I don't have children, and I enjoy the rights of a full fledged adult, so I think maybe my general views will be different from a parent's.

 
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22. Re: No subject Dec 4, 2005, 02:55 Luthier
 
Except that this doesn't work.

Instead of that wonderful tirade, care to actually prove your point?

I wasn't aware until just now that rasing your kids by yourself was not a viable strategy, and only government could do it for me by passing laws.

This comment was edited on Dec 4, 02:55.
 
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21. Re: No subject Dec 4, 2005, 02:52 Zephalephelah
 
be an involved parent and see what your kids buy and/or want to buy and play.

Except that this doesn't work.

So what game are you playing son?
Oh it's Counter-Strike dad, a murder simulator. There's no reason to be killing people most of the time & often times after we do, we'll spray paint over their bodies or continue attacking them when they're a lifeless corpse. When there is a reason to kill the other team, half the time it is to prevent the good guys from rescuing the hostages or stop them from diffusing a bomb because we're terrorists. Also, a lot of guys talk shit on their mics and call people bitches, whores, and niggers. Why dad?

 
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20. No subject Dec 4, 2005, 02:47 Luthier
 
There's a huge difference with what's happening with R-rated movies. Those restrictions are self imposed by the industry. They are NOT enforced by the government.

The "we must protect the children" rhetoric is misleading and wrong. If you think that children should be protected, by all means protect YOUR kids. Do not protect MINE. That's the whole point of the discussion, and as a matter of fact one of the underlying principles this nation is founded upon.

Read with me. The 1st Amendment says: "Congress shall make no law [..] abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press[...]." A video game, or a movie, or a book, are all expressions that fall under the general term of "speech". Therefore, it is against the US constitution to pass laws that in any way curtail the distribution of video games, movies, books, newspapers, TV shows, blogs, posters, tattoos, T-shirts with silly slogans, and so on and so forth.

The only possible exception is when a certain element of "speech" can bring about immediate harm. Video games are not proven to do anything of the sort. Think of it this way. Parents are free to take their kids to Neo-Nazi rallies or KKK cross burnings. There's no law against that. Why should there be one against junior playing Doom? We all played it when we were kids. Look how many of us turned out all right. No any less than in any previous generation.

 
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19. No subject Dec 4, 2005, 02:44 McSeb
 
Will these stupid laws ever stop.

For the last time: If you are worried about the video games, movies, tv shows or even books your kids are exposed to, be an involved parent and see what your kids buy and/or want to buy and play.

It shouldn't be up to the government to decide what is good for you and your kids, they can't even make good decisions about important stuff like wars, hurricanes and economics but you want to trust them to police what you watch. The last president had sex in the oval office and you want the government to worry about sex in video games !?!?

The person who has the most authority in the eyes of a kid is his parents, hell even the cops can use "I'll call your parents" as a threat. Take five minutes to listen to your kid talk about the new games he wants or watch him play his games, most games aren't very secretive about how much sex or violence is in the game, it's usually blatently apparent.

Let the stupid government deal with real tech problems that need laws like identity theft, spyware and spam...

...sry I had to get that out...

 
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18. Re: No subject Dec 4, 2005, 01:25 JediLuke
 
The MPAA can and will fine theaters and retailers for selling inappropriate product to minors, but like I said it isn't strictly enforced. The ESRB doesn't enforce the ratings they impose.

In case you misread me, I was agreeing with your implicit point and calling Fang out for playing semantic games.
 
http://stevegoldbergmusic.com
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17. Re: No subject Dec 4, 2005, 01:13 Krovven
 
Actually, it is different, no one is proposing any penalties for R-rated movies.

You're right Fang, it is different, since movies are not video games. What he meant to say, however, is that it's analogous.

The MPAA can and will fine theaters and retailers for selling inappropriate product to minors, but like I said it isn't strictly enforced. The ESRB doesn't enforce the ratings they impose.


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Zero Tolerance Games - http://www.ztgames.com
CSS Server 63.208.142.66:27015
This comment was edited on Dec 4, 01:13.
 
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16. Re: No subject Dec 4, 2005, 01:08 JediLuke
 
Actually, it is different, no one is proposing any penalties for R-rated movies.

You're right Fang, it is different, since movies are not video games. What he meant to say, however, is that it's analogous.
 
http://stevegoldbergmusic.com
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15. Re: No subject Dec 4, 2005, 01:07 Krovven
 
no one is proposing any penalties for R-rated movies

No one is proposing it because there ALREADY ARE penalties. They are however not strictly enforced and really only acted upon if some irrate parent complains loudly.

Once there is a penalty for retailers with regards to games, people will shut up somewhat.

I think part of the problem is that games are overly stringent in their ratings. I mean, an equivalent R rating for Halo?

Halo = Swearing and the violence. First off it's two unrelated ratings boards, and 2nd you only watch a movie, you don't interact with it. When the person is the one that is controlling how the "violence" occurs has a lot to do with the level of rating.



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This comment was edited on Dec 4, 01:08.
 
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14. Re: No subject Dec 4, 2005, 00:43 Fang
 
This is no different than if stores were selling (renting) R rated movies

Actually, it is different, no one is proposing any penalties for R-rated movies. I would consider them more serious if they were doing this across the board, movies and games. As it is, they are just trying to play politics.

I think part of the problem is that games are overly stringent in their ratings. I mean, an equivalent R rating for Halo? I understand GTA, but there are so many innocent games out there that get an M.

 
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13. Re: No subject Dec 4, 2005, 00:38 Krovven
 
What exactly are you folks up in arms about here?
Why should they not ban the sale of violent video games to minors?

If a store like EB, Best Buy or whomever is selling a game labelled "AO" (Adults Only 18+) to someone under 18 and a parent isn't there to approve, they should be fined, and for repeat offences the punishment scales up until they lose their business license. Likewise selling an "M" (17+). "T" rated games is less of a problem since kids under 12 are much less likely to be going to buy their own games.

This is no different than if stores were selling (renting) R rated movies, porn, or convenience stores selling cigarettes, porn mags, or liquor to minors. The retailers need to be held accountable for who they sell the products to when there is an age requirement in affect. It is just plain common sense, and unless there is more to this than "banning the sale of violent or sexual video games to minors.", then I think the judge is a moron as it's not unconstitutional to want to limit a product from reaching someone of inappropriate age.

However when you get morons like Thompson that want to ban mature video games from being made and sold in stores altogether, that's when I start to have a serious problem.

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This comment was edited on Dec 4, 00:44.
 
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12. Re: Parenting Dec 3, 2005, 22:25 Zephalephelah
 
So the minors must ask for money since the majority of them don't have jobs yet for video game money. That is where the parenting part comes in and they ask about the game, to see if it's suitable for their child.

Except that doesn't work at all.
Dad, can I have $40 for a video game?
What game?
Postal 2.
What's it about?
Oh, you can piss on people, light people on fire with gasoline, and something morbid to do with Gary Coleman's head.
Sure son, here's $80. Pick one up for a friend.

 
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11. Re: No subject Dec 3, 2005, 18:37 asrof
 
I think this situation is like with drugs, the media tells parents every kid in the world is a meth addict so the parents go OH MY GOD, NOT BILLY! and are convinced this is taking place whether or not they have actual evidence.

So now the media is telling parents their video games are turning them into serial killer rapists and parents are going OH MY GOD, NOT JOHNNY! without any actual evidence, and thinking SOMEONE MUST DO SOMETHING! But uh.. not me, of course! I'm busy with my things, things and stuff! Can't we get those nice politicians to take care of this?

 
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10. god bless the constitution Dec 3, 2005, 17:59 Semantics
 
that's the beautiful thing about these laws: you can support them, and get the political points for PROTECTING OUR CHILDREN, but ultimately it doesn't actually affect anything.

 
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9. Re: G-Rod Dec 3, 2005, 17:19 Inali
 
G-Rod, as he is known here in Chicago, is a doofus.

And thats from the part of the state that likes him. Get a few miles outside of Chicagoland and the names get much worse. Unfortunately we have to put up with him for at least another 11 months :/

 
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8. No subject Dec 3, 2005, 17:04 space captain
 
what the hell are they gonna do - stick beat cops in the local EB??

stupid politicians - i wonder if they think they put a stop to all that satanic D&D and heavy metal with the backwards messages

________________________
music from space captain:
http://www.soundclick.com/bands/6/errantways_music.htm
http://www.soundclick.com/bands/4/invisibleacropolis_music.htm
 
Go forth, and kill!
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