the supreme court on monday - in a 7-to-2 decision - struck down the california law that banned the sale of violent video games to children. the law had been challenged on the grounds of the first amendment - freedom of speech. justice antonin scalia wrote the majority decision and stated this:
"like the portected books, plays and movies that preceded them, video games communicate ideas - and even social messages - through many familiar literary devices (such as characters, dialogue, plot and music) and through features distinctive to the medium (such as the player's interaction with the virtual world), that sufices to confer first amendment protection." justice scalia also stated that depictions of violence have never been subject to government regulation. he went on to say, grimm's fairy tales are grim indeed. he also said that high school reading lists and saturday morning cartoons are riddled with violence.
john riccitello, chief executive of electronic arts (EA), stated that: "everybody wins on this decision. the court has affirmed the constitutional rights of game developers, adults keep the right to decide what's appropriate in their houses, and store owners can sell games without fear of criminal prosecution."
leland yee, a california senator who wrote the law stated that: "the supreme court once again put the interest of corporate america before the interest of our children. it is simply wrong that the video game industry can be allowed to put their profit margins over the rights of parents and the will-being of children."
there's just a couple things i want to comment on about this. first of all, i'm sure you're wondering why i have this on here, well it's about the first amendment and this blog is about everything and anything to do with writing. and the first amendment is extremely important to writing. otherwise you wouldn't have things like romance novels. for i am sure - for the protection of the children - senators would try to get rid of it for it would be considered 'filth'. second, my favorite quote out of this is from the EA executive. when he said that adults get to decide what's right for their house. that is just the most perfect quote ever! let me decide what is right for my children not the government. and that goes with books, movies, music and video games. the government doesn't raise my children, i do. third, when the senator stated that the supreme court ruled in favor of the corporations and didn't have the well-being of children on their minds, i thought that was interesting. the supreme court needs to think of everyone and the future generations and what does the constitution say about the law. that is their goal, their job. and i find that the people hind their agenda's behind slogans of 'think of the children' to push the laws that they want. i will think of the children, but i will think of my children and let other peoples parents think of their children. don't push laws becuase you don't like something and then hide behind the slogan 'think of the children'.
- quotes from the new york times article on 6/27/11 written by adam liptak