California Law Meets First Hurdles

California Law Meets First Hurdles California Law Meets First Hurdles

You're riding on a Harley, wearing no helmet and blasting away anything that moves with your shotgun, are you breaking the new California video-game law? Of course not, you are after all the current governor of the state and you are starring in a Hollywood movie, not a video game.

The reaction to Governor Schwarzenegger's Assembly Bill No. 1179 has been intense and is typified by the comments made by Doug Lowenstein, president of the entertainment software association (ESA), who stated ESA intends to file a lawsuit to strike this law down and we are confident that we will prevail. ESA will be joined by the Video Software Dealers Association (VSDA)who will also challenge the law.

For those of you not aware of the details, on Friday October 7, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed a bill proposed by Assemblyman Leland Yee that will fine, up to USD 1,000, anyone who sells a violent video game to minors. The bill has been described as vague at best and hypocritical at worst by the industry and by first amendment activists. What is strange however, is that in a state where Quentin Tarrantino is revered as an artist for such wholesome works as Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fiction, Assemblyman Yee decided that his first priority was the gaming industry when minors seem to have an opinion on Mr. Tarrantino's works.

You have to be careful when examining why people are opposed to the legislation, it's not that anyone disagrees with the noble cause of protecting minors from violent content but that the bill is a rushed, childish attempt to convince voters that politicians care about the issue rather than an honest effort to protect America's youth from exposure to violence.