Every once in a while, a politician turns his or her attention to video games. And we respond with giving them attention, whether it’s Hillary, Tipper, or Lieberman. The latest crusade, led by Schwarzenegger (fate is indeed not without a sense of humor), has led to the Supreme Court’s involvement.
Neither my study of political science at Georgetown nor my real world experience give me much of a clue to how the Supremes will decide the case. And I don’t care. My advice is to just ignore it. Unless you’re a journalist that wants to go all Fox News to induce “gamer panic” to raise your traffic, you should realize that the decision won’t matter that much. Sure, it could set another miserable precedent for our American nanny state, but not in much of a significant way. And sure, it’s good to fight to promote the acceptance of video games as both art and speech. And sure, you could worry that this is just the beginning of video game censorship. Probably not. Slippery slope scenarios fail in the real world more often than not.
As both an American citizen and a video game developer, there are a lot of things that are more worthy of your time, attention, and ire.
P.S.: The most amusing part of the transcript linked above: The California law may bar the torture of virtual depictions of men and women. However, it would appear to allow the maiming, torture, and persecution of Vulcans, elves, and androids. Life is funny sometimes.