Sandy Hook’s State Rep Proposes Sin Tax On M-Rated Games

Sandy Hook’s State Rep Proposes Sin Tax On M-Rated Games

The freakout over violent video games shows no signs of abating. We’re back to Connecticut again. Debralee Hovey, a state representative there, has proposed an additional 10 per cent tax on the sale of M-rated video games.

The idea has been thoroughly discredited everywhere else it was brought up, but as Hovey’s district includes Newtown, scene of the Sandy Hook school massacre in December, there’s an element of political sympathy here that could carry it further.

As for the effect of the bill, it’s nothing we haven’t heard before: An extra $US6 from the sale of an M-rated game would be collected by the state to fund mental health service. That’s the big broad good thing everyone likes to bring up because a) no one knows how “mental health services” would directly prevent another Sandy Hook, but no one knows that they wouldn’t, either. More importantly b) it doesn’t get you in trouble with the NRA or its lunatic cheering section.

I’ve got to wonder, would it be more constitutional, and still send the same message, if the state of Connecticut simply required all M-rated games to carry the label “YOU ARE A BAD PERSON FOR BUYING AND/OR PLAYING THIS”?

Connecticut lawmaker proposes video game tax [WFSB-TV via The Escapist]


  • I just had this ‘hang on a minute’ moment, where I thought back to this whole debacle trying to remember how video games were related exactly, only to realise they weren’t. Somewhere in my head I’ve actually managed to associate video game violence with the Sandy Hook massacre, always in the negative, always to rebut the scapegoating the US media has tried to apply in typical fashion, but nonetheless it’s now a solid association, when it should have none at all. That is… f****d up, despite the idiotic spin put on this, I’m not sure whether I’m more scared of myself or the media right now.

    Mentally ill person with relatively easy access to guns murders children.
    There’s the facts, and yet it’s not surprising in the least to see the reaction be a tax on video games, in fact I find myself happily accepting it as a part of the incident, one I strongly disagree with, but a part nonetheless, accepting something that shouldn’t even be acknowledged.

    Christ, these people are pissing on the real causes of this situation and in doing so utterly disrespecting the victims. I can’t begin to imagine how I’d feel if my child were murdered and instead of at least making a show of improving gun laws and mental health care the Australian government said “It’s k, we’re taxing Call of Duty.”

    • the Australian government said “It’s k, we’re taxing Call of Duty.”

      They don’t need to though, Activision already have.

      Back to the actual issue though, it’s pointless… while they’re at it they’ll have to remove price reductions.

      The only way I would support this is if the 10% went into something like gun control and mental health care…. not the fat cat pockets.

  • Anyone else find it laughable that the issue of mental health issues and the resources to deal with it are accepted by virtually all parts to this argument as being of paramount importance, yet they only want to tax video games, a relatively small part of the market, to fund it? Why not tax alcohol and tobacco as well? Cars? Guns? When did video games become more horrible to own than an automatic freaking rifle?

    Gah, bad mood activated, day ruined.

  • Yes, a sin tax on M-rated games because the person who did the shooting did most definitely, 100% beyond a doubt.. NOT have any mental illness; because this issue is all about the games he played, which are no different to the games millions of other people play, every day…

    Seems legit.

  • Couple more shootouts in schools being scapegoated to video games and they can bump that tax up to 80%. Then Americans will know what it is like to afford video games when living in Australia -_-

    Australia has a nerd tax. Consider anything that tickles your fancy as a nerd or that stereotypically interests nerds (MTG, Warhammer, video games, the internet etc) and I guarantee you that it is more expensive than anywhere else in the developed world.

    • So are food prices. We have the highest grocery prices in the world because Coles and Woolworths control 80% of the market and effectively monopolise it. So we have a fatty tax too. Jeez… talk about the shit end of the stick if you love food and games in this country…

  • How many of these proposals need to be shot down before they stop coming up with these ridiculous taxes? It’s not even a month since the last failed one, and they all seem to forget games got declared as free speech and are thus protected as such. Not to mention that M-rated games include ultraviolent titles like Guitar Hero and Ultimate Card Games.

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