Supreme Deliberation

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.

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