Court strikes down California video game law

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - A federal appeals court on Friday struck down a California law that sought to ban the sale or rental of violent video games to minors.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the 2005 law violates minors’ rights under the Constitution’s First and 14th amendments. The three-judge panel’s unanimous ruling upholds an earlier ruling in U.S. District Court.

The law would have prohibited the sale or rental of violent games to anyone under 18. It also would have created strict labeling requirements for video game manufacturers.

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I wonder if the 9th Court would rule that the movie ratings system is a violation of minor’s rights under the 1st and 14th amendments, since it limits their access to sexually explicit material.

Another example of court’s legislating. I don’t get it.
Protect the common good certainly is not the law they labor under. Protect the cause of those who make money no matter how immoral or dangerous it is. Does anyone see any connection?

Maybe some investigative reporter would be willing to see if there is any connection between payoffs from these industries to the court systems.

I have to go with the 9th Circuit with this one.

If parents don’t want their children to play these sort of games, don’t let them.

Any small assitances provided to parents is outweighed by the risk of letting the government determine what sort of speech is permissible.

IMHO, part of the support for this sort of law is generational in that people that grew up before video games view them as a lesser media than other art forms.

The attitude expressed here is also not consistent with Catholic moral teachings. These types of laws have been around for a very long time and no harm has come. It is in the interests of both parents and society as large to protect our youth. You seek to destroy with some misguided idea of “freedom”.

The court is absolutely wrong and this decision is *profoundly *immoral.

You are certainly correct about the first point I am not a parent at all.

With respect to my position being inconsistent with Catholic moral teaching, please cite the section of the catechism (or source) you are relying on.

This is purely a prudential quesiton, not one of morals.

You are incorrect. From the Catechism.

2210 The importance of the family for the life and well-being of society entails a particular responsibility for society to support and strengthen marriage and the family. Civil authority should consider it a grave duty “to acknowledge the true nature of marriage and the family, to protect and foster them, to safeguard public morality, and promote domestic prosperity.”

                                                                                       2211 The political community has a duty to honor the family, to assist it, and to ensure especially:    
  • the freedom to establish a family, have children, and bring them up in keeping with the family’s own moral and religious convictions;
  • the protection of the stability of the marriage bond and the institution of the family;
  • the freedom to profess one’s faith, to hand it on, and raise one’s children in it, with the necessary means and institutions;
  • the right to private property, to free enterprise, to obtain work and housing, and the right to emigrate;
  • in keeping with the country’s institutions, the right to medical care, assistance for the aged, and family benefits;
  • the protection of security and health, especially with respect to dangers like drugs, pornography, alcoholism, etc.;
  • the freedom to form associations with other families and so to have representation before civil authority.

If you are authentically Catholic, you will read this with humility and see that your original position is at odds with Catholic teaching. If you are not swayed by the what the Church teaches and obstinately attempt to defend your statements, then another conclusion would need be drawn.

So, who do you think is more wise, the Church lead by the Holy Spirit or you and the anti-Catholic justices on the 9th circuit court? Who is more just? Who really has what is in the best interest of both the individual and society at large? I’ll give you a hint, the answer to all these questions is the same.

If the 9th Circuit says something is unconstitutional, then you can bet it is constitutional.

And vice versa

I certainly don’t dispute any thing you quote. However, I fail to see how any of those general principles compel the conclusion that the specific California law should be upheld.

Parents can still make the choice of what games their children play. There is already a voluntary rating system in place so that parents can look at a game see what types of content the game has. Gaming consoles have mechanisms for parents to control ratings and effect lock-out certain types of games.

I still maintain that this is an issue of prudential judgment rather than morality, because there is little to no practical benefit to parents and it unnecessarily involves the state into the parent child relationship, and the law is overbroad.

Would you support a law that imposed similar restrictions on the sale of books?

This is it in a nutshell!
The 9th jerket court of appeals is the most overturned court in the country. Anything they have to say is almost always at odds with truth and justice.

Okay, well thank you for answering the questions regarding your thoughts on about authentic Catholic teachings.

Your position cannot be reconciled with authentic Catholic social teachings, despite what you may claim or whatever logic you attempt to use to twist this into some type of moral choice.

By the way, the Catholic Church has never taught that unlimited free speech or freedom of expression is a right. That is an modern (and perverse) concept.

Would you support a law that imposed similar restrictions on the sale of books?

Absolutely. There are already such laws prohibiting the sales of pornography to teens and the sale, distribution or possession of pornographic images of underage children. I absolutely support them as all Catholics should. Anyone who would seek to overturn these laws is not merely morally bankrupt, but sick and engaged in great evil.

The Catholic Church has also never taught that unlimited free speech or freedom of expression is NOT a right.

The only evil is engaging in the use force to force people and tell them what they can and cannot see in their own privacy. Does some guy playing a violent video game for mere entertainment somehow hurt you? Does it infringe on your rights… oh wait that’s right, you don’t believe in rights, silly me :wink:

And even if it is “immoral” to play those games, you have every right to tell him what you think, but you don’t have the right to force him to stop by physical threats at the hands of the state or yourself. The proper Christian response is to inform, not be a bully.

So those video games that have pornography in them, you believe that they should also be sold to minors merely because they are a different format from a magazine or video tape? Children are not allowed into rated R movies, or NC-17, why should video games be given a free pass in your opinion?

Oohhh, well how about Scandal? I am pretty sure that is a moral law curtailing certain kinds of speech.

False, inaccurate or not caring about the veracity of speech is constitutional but immoral.

That’s not quite accurate either. You cannot libel or slander someone. That kind of speech is not protected.

Yes, it is protected. It is just possibly actionable, though, which is something entirely different. And it is very difficult to libel a public figure.

:yup: yep, the 9th CIRCUS Court strikes(down) again…:yup:

That is not correct.

The only evil is engaging in the use force to force people and tell them what they can and cannot see in their own privacy. Does some guy playing a violent video game for mere entertainment somehow hurt you? Does it infringe on your rights… oh wait that’s right, you don’t believe in rights, silly me :wink:

And even if it is “immoral” to play those games, you have every right to tell him what you think, but you don’t have the right to force him to stop by physical threats at the hands of the state or yourself. The proper Christian response is to inform, not be a bully.
You are doing nothing less than call evil and good evil.

This law is not about the rights of an individual, it is about parental rights. It is always a grave evil to put children in harms way or interfere with reasonable parental rights.

Are you Inman?

RPP,

First, all of the discussion about pornography is irrelevant. The law only deals with violence. The 9th Circuit acknowledges that the government has broader powers to regulate pornography.

Second, violence in a work of art doesn’t necessarily make it immoral. So the law isn’t about public morality. Therefore, supporting the California law isn’t something a Catholic is required to do. A Catholic certainly could chose to support it of course. Rather, what this law is really about is the dubious theory that some parents and psychologies hold that playing violent video games causes children to act violently. Again, a Catholic can believe that, but they are not required to.

Third, applying this California law to books, paintings, and other art forms, shows how overbroad and bad of a law it is. The law would require branding of the Bible with the California warning label, and outlaw its sale to minors. Although other types of works might be banned as well, in its broadest application, the California law applies to games that have:

“killing, maiming, dismembering, or sexually
assaulting an image of a human being”

and

“serious injury upon images of human beings or characters
with substantially human characteristics in a manner
which is especially heinous, cruel, or depraved in that it involves torture or serious physical abuse to the victim.”

Numerous passages in the Bible would meet that two prong tests, include the Crucifixion, the stoning of St. Stephen, the book of Job, thereby triggering the labeling requirements and restrictions on sale to minors. Likewise, paintings, sculptures, etc. of those events would need to be labeled as well. So no cruxifixes, rosary guides, etc.

I am not saying there can’t be any restrictions on speech, but this is particular law is not a proper exercise of whatever government interest the government should have in regulating speech. When you give the government the unfettered right to restrict speech, there is a risk that it will use that power in a way contrary to liberty (and public morality for that matter).

FWIW, this isn’t an example of the 9th Circuit issuing a decision that is extremely liberal. Similar laws have been struck down in other circuits for similar reasons.

You have made a number of assertions and stated your beliefs quite lucidly. However, the complete inconsistency in your logic make absolutely no sense. You claim that this is about free speech and freedom of expression, then you ignore that certain speech and expressions for minors is limited under the law. That is not being intellectually honest, or at least consistent.

You cannot hold that your views are consistent with the teachings of the Church. To do so is incorrect.

I will not discuss this with you further.

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