Legal Issues

by Mike Masnick




Yup, The Constitution Still Applies In Minnesota, Too

from the in-case-you-were-wondering dept

How many times does this need to be repeated? How many times will grandstanding, politically motivated state politicians ignore the rulings in every other state and try to push through unconstitutional laws to ban video games? Just as has happened in places like Louisiana, Oklahoma, Michigan, Illinois and a few other states, a law banning the sale of certain video games to minors in the state of Minnesota has been struck down as unconstitutional. The same thing happens absolutely everywhere it's tried -- and any politicians must know that by now. There's simply no reason to put forth more of these laws, as they simply waste the time of the courts and act as a way for politicians to grandstand on an issue that doesn't seem supported by the facts. In this case, the judge noted, again, that there's simply no real proof that video games and violence are linked: "There is a paucity of evidence linking the availability of video games with any harm to Minnesota's children at all.... It is impossible to determine from the data presented whether violent video games cause violence, or whether violent individuals are attracted to violent video games."

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  • identicon
    Joshua, 31 Jul 2006 @ 6:53pm

    How long will it go on?

    As long as it is politically convenient

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    chris, 31 Jul 2006 @ 6:53pm

    Lol

    Wow, thats funny. I wonder if the ban on social networks will get struck down by the courts as well

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Alex, 31 Jul 2006 @ 7:04pm

    No connection

    I, being a pretty average teen, can honestly say that violent videogames don't really affect the behavior of teens. If anything, its only a way to rid us of too much free time :D

    The fact is, the cases you hear about where a kid kills himself or another person over a videogame is just that, a case. It doesn't in anyway represent the rest of us. In those cases, the kid is screwed up in the first place, videogames didn't give him any thoughts that he didn't already have.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Chris, 31 Jul 2006 @ 7:12pm

      Re: No connection

      Too true. I once knew a kid who was really violent and he didnt have a video game system, then he got an xbox and halo2 and he calmed down. How that works out I dont know but it happened

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Arochone, 31 Jul 2006 @ 9:24pm

        Re: Re: No connection

        "Too true. I once knew a kid who was really violent and he didnt have a video game system, then he got an xbox and halo2 and he calmed down. How that works out I dont know but it happened"

        Quite easy for me to understand, being 16 myself....
        I'm not violent at all...never even had detention in school, over a 4.0 GPA this year....and I've been playing computer games rated teen for violence since I was 6 years old. The games are half the reason I'm so smart. I got into AP Computer Science a year before my school district offers it because as a kid I loved these games, and I loved to play around and try to edit the settings and crap.

        But back to the original post by Chris....kinda got sidetracked there....
        Violent videogames offer a place for kids to release their anger. Instead of getting a gun and taking it into school and shooting people, they got on their computer or X-Box or something and drive a tank through NYC or something. It's a lot more satisfying :)

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      PD, 1 Aug 2006 @ 12:33pm

      Re: No connection

      I second that motion. I just can't wait until I'm 18 so I don't have to worry about these minors-and-videogames laws.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Mark Kitchen, 31 Jul 2006 @ 7:17pm

    Counterpoint

    Of course these FPS (and other) games give the player the idea of *reality* they are the actual player.

    But let's get real here, these games are played all over the world - Iceland, Poland, US, Portugal, etc etc - How many cases of "student rage" are there in each of these countries?

    I'm sure there are isolated events in each, but are they blamed on fscking video games?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Chris, 31 Jul 2006 @ 7:20pm

      Re: Counterpoint

      Glad you asked, the answer is no! I cant wait untill the politicians try to ban kids from owning cars because they could crash one and kill someone

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        loserbum3, 31 Jul 2006 @ 10:56pm

        Re: Re: Counterpoint

        You do realize that kids aren't allowed to have cars because they might crash. That's why you have to be 15 to get a learner's permit.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Sanguine Dream, 1 Aug 2006 @ 7:07am

          Re: Re: Re: Counterpoint

          I think he's going after the notion that only young drivers cause accidents. Even though old people cause just as much damage in cars.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Alex again, 31 Jul 2006 @ 7:26pm

      Re: Counterpoint

      Well, like I said, those people who believe FPS games are real (thats what your point is, right?) already have reality problems that need to be handled. Maybe addiction problems too.

      And Chris is right, I highly doubt they blame the video games. Maybe instead of blaming videogames for violence, perhaps look at the world around you. The news is more violent than some of these videogames, and more horrific too, since its real.

      Every single day, as an American, I can turn on the news and get violence in areas like the Middle East shoved down my throat. Maybe we should take a look at our REAL actions, that actions that teach our young ones that violence is okay.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Xcetron, 31 Jul 2006 @ 7:19pm

    Saying that video games cause violence is like saying that by owning a gun it causes you to want to shoot other people.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Morder, 31 Jul 2006 @ 7:42pm

      Re:

      "Saying that video games cause violence is like saying that by owning a gun it causes you to want to shoot other people."

      Ya. Besides I've wanted to shoot people before I played videogames.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Mike, 31 Jul 2006 @ 7:38pm

    The Solution...

    You want to solve teen violence? Repeal the child labor laws! it would also solve our immigration problem by adding an influx of unskilled slave labor.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    lar3ry, 31 Jul 2006 @ 7:46pm

    Look at it this way...

    Dick Cavett once said, "I see more comedy on television than I do violence, but not once have I seen anybody complaining about comedy on the streets."

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Patrick, 31 Jul 2006 @ 8:50pm

    Can we not forget that there are some people classified as crazy and that certain things like video games don't necessarily trigger the craziness? Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Techguy83, 31 Jul 2006 @ 8:56pm

    its a podium

    It is a podium for Politicians eager to look as if they are "for the children" to use. Parents too lazy to do their own jobs as parents listen and like the idea.

    I can actually eventually seeing these state politicians getting a federal Congressman to start up an amendment making it legal to ban the games from being sold or rented.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 31 Jul 2006 @ 8:57pm

    yet another case of people not wanting to take responsibility for their kids and their actions. In the US, people seem to have this inability to admit when they have done something wrong or when they don't know what they are doing. Instead of taking a look at the real reason a kid might be doing harmful actions....let's blame the video game.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Rickler, 31 Jul 2006 @ 9:48pm

    I went to a gamestop few months back with some people one of them who was paying was 17. However he had no ID with him. The clerk refused to let us purchase the M rated game. Even though I was 20, the clerk said I could not buy the game because I was buying it for him... I explained to him there is no law against selling a video game to minors yet he still refused, stating he could loose his job. This is in California, a liberal state. WTF is going on?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Sanguine Dream, 1 Aug 2006 @ 7:39am

      Re:

      When I woked in retail (Spencer Gifts) a few years back we didn't sell any adult novelty items to kids under 18. It is very true that that associate could have lost his job if sold it to you to give to a minor. While there is no state law companies do have guidlines and rules that employees must follow. I work in the IT department of a bank. There is no state law saying I can't use my network access to give myself a higher level of access. But if I did that I could be fired.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 31 Jul 2006 @ 9:56pm

    What we really need to do is...

    Take video games away from all of the radical Muslims, they OBVIOUSLY have way too many games. In fact, lets take them away from radical Israel too. Oh and the US, of course the Chinese and India and Pakistan too...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Old-Timer, 31 Jul 2006 @ 10:04pm

    Reality Check

    I have played video games since they have been introduced to the public. (Atari, etc) I have all the current-gen systems. I love GTA and Mario Party both the same.
    Instead of people trying to point the blame on a type of media (which is all games are) why don't they attempt to look at the world we live in first.
    If they (politicians, etc.) would open their friggin eyes they might actually see the problem...
    Parents.
    Rather than spend an hour or so actually supervising their children, they would instead give them the newest game and have them plop their fat asses in front of the TV.
    Try going outside... you might be amazed.
    There is an incredible game out there just waiting to be played.
    It's called REAL LIFE.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Jack, 31 Jul 2006 @ 11:45pm

    im 15, and i play video games, not heaps, but i do play them, and most of the games i play are violent, eg GTA, which also has drug and sex themes in it. And the sort of people that i know who are violent allready have problems, when theyre are cases where video games are linked to violent behaviour i can garuntee that in every case the person in question allready had major problems and either couldnt seperate video games and reality, or they just triggered problems that were allready there.
    ive been wathcing violent movies, playing violent video games, listening to so called violent music for years,and as far as i can tell im fine, in fact whenim really angry about soemthing i go play abit of GTA, shoot some people, have some high speed chases etc etc, and it calms me down, also when i used to listen all the rap music that talked about killing people and stuff, that calmed me down when i was in a bad mood, but then again, music calms me down in most situations, no matter what sort of music

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 1 Aug 2006 @ 1:23am

    Jesus...

    I know kids that run around sub-divisions "car-shopping" and burning down massive barns while ingesting mass quantities of alcohol... because they just don't have any good video games to play.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Sanguine Dream, 1 Aug 2006 @ 8:59am

    Stereotype of the Day...

    Rock n Roll is all about sex and drugs...

    Rap is all about pimps, hoes, and money...

    Goth people are always sad and suicidal...

    Punk style people are destructive...

    and new addinng:

    Violent games cause people to be violent.


    If thats true then why not ban all religion becuase religion is what caused those suicide cults to go a little to far. Or maybe ban tv and music because they make people do bad things.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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