"Right now what I am envisaging is a system where South Australia still receives games that have been rated MA15+," said SA Attorney-General John Rau, speaking to Gamespot, "but we simply put an R18+ sticker on top of the MA15+ sticker before the games are sold."
I exhale. Breathe. And sigh.
There goes the last vestige of enthusiasm for a debate that has slowly devolved into what can only be described as farce. Just put a sticker on it. Problem solved.
What a difference seven months makes.
In the weeks approaching the SCAG meeting, in December 2010, it felt as though Australian gamers, as a collective, were riding on a tsunami of goodwill and optimism. Within a matter of months we had gone from no hope whatsoever to a record breaking petition and Federal government support on an issue that had been festering for over a decade.
Back then the momentum felt like an unstoppable force. Now? It's more like a turgid dirge of lethargy and cowardice.
Attorneys-General agreeing in 'principle', Attorneys-General agreeing with a caveat, trying to cover every angle, trying their level best to avoid making any concrete decision whatsoever. Trying to somehow manage and filter the stream of noise from the vocal minority. It all feels so... 'political' - the correct decision sacrificed at the altar of bureaucracy and endless arse covering.
Being perfectly honest? I feel drained. Drained of energy for this debate. Drained of enthusiasm for a process that starts and stutters, that move backwards, that shuffles sideways, moving in any direction other than straight ahead, the direction it should be heading in - off the agenda, done and dusted, over and done with.
At this point there is no more to discuss. And it's getting to the stage where I absolutely do not care whether this happens or not. It makes little difference to me as a gamer. A handful of games refused classification per decade that I can easily, easily import at the cost of local industry. A handful of irritating lobby groups I can easily ignore.
Brendan O'Connor - I have all the respect in the world for you, a politician who had the courage to seize this issue by the balls and really make a go of it - a politician who recognised that this was an issue that actually mattered to Australians.
As for the rest of you, those that would hum and haw, and drag out what should have been done years ago - put up or shut up. Shake off the shackles - as I said in a previous article, let's just get this thing over and done with.
Before we all lose interest. Before the decision loses any meaning it could have had to begin with, before it becomes a historical laughing stock - a legacy of political lethargy and cowardice.