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Violence

Utah's anti-video game bill has Jack Thompson written all over it

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Have any of you guys been following this anti-video game/movie bill that’s currently bouncing around Utah’s legislature? It’s gotten attention for a few reasons, one of which is because the original version of the bill—it has since been amended—was either written by or conceived by (depending on to whom you talk) famous video game hater (and disbarred lawyer) Jack Thompson. Legislatively speaking, it’s a pretty exciting progression.

The bill, HB 353, would punish retailers who say they don’t sell violent video games to minors but actually do sell such games to minors. In other words, if you open a store—Ted’s Video Game Emporium, for example—and flatly say, “We sell all games to everyone, regardless of the ESRB rating, it’s not like that’s law or anything” then Utah would have no problem with you. Well, I’m sure it would have a problem with you, but not with respect to this bill.

As always, Video Game Politics has all the “Inside Baseball” coverage you could want.

One other thing: there’s one of those form letter petitions going around that, if you live in Utah, you may to want sign. I’m nominally against form letter campaigns—it makes it easy for people who don’t know too much about a subject to complain to The Man—but if you like to see your government in action! It’s like a real life civics class.

What I’ve always wanted to know is, why does Jack Thompson even give a damn about who buys what video game and whether or not they’re violent? Just retire and live on a beach already, sir.

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