U.S. Supreme Court Calls Violent Videogames Art: Protected Under First Amendment

playstation ps3 slim topThe U.S. Supreme Court has delivered a tremendous blow to any state that tries to restrict the age for children to be allowed to play violent video games.

As soon as the announcement was made, you could hear a collective sigh of relief for the video game industry.  The industry has ballooned, and this will allow it to continue to grow.

The courts found the case to be dissected into two distinct positions.  One would be if a State, California in particular, is allowed to rule against or in favor of values. And secondly, whether or not video games can be protected under the first amendment, otherwise known as the Freedom of Speech. In order to be secure under 1st Amendment rights, video games would have to be considered art.  The court granted them that depiction through their courtdecision.  In their opinion, video games are art, and it is at the discretion of the parental unit to determine whether they want their children playing violently themed games.  The U.S. Supreme court maintains that it is not the duty of the state to determine what values are instilled in the children of the individuals, but rather it is the responsibility of the parents.

Justice Scalia stated, “Like the protected 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 suffices to confer First Amendment protection”.

Violently themed movies, books, television programs and toys have been offered to children as far as we could remember.  If the Supreme court decided to act on behalf of those opposed to violent video games, they would have been contradicting every previous case before it.  Additionally, there has to be evidence that digitally graphic stimulation actually leads to violent behavior.  So far, there hasn’t been a single study that has come out proving that to be the case.




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