Illinois Rep Becomes 723,556th Lawmaker To Threaten Banning Violent Video Games

Illinois Rep Becomes 723,556th Lawmaker To Threaten Banning Violent Video Games
Apparently elected officials have nothing more pressing to worry about and have decided to focus on banning video games...again. (Image: Rockstar Games)

Another year, another attempt to ban the sale of violent video games. U.S. House Bill 3531 is the brainchild of Illinois State representative Marcus Evans, Jr. and is actually an amendment to a U.S. statute passed in 2005 that already bans the sale of violent video games to minors. HB3531’s proposed changes would instead ban the sale of “violent” games to buyers of all ages, and change the definition of “violent video game” to include both physical and psychological harm.

Oh boy.

As reported by the Chicago Sun-Times, Representative Evans, alarmed by an uptick in carjackings in his district, decided to take action with an amendment that would make selling video games deemed to be violent illegal and slap “offenders” with a $US1000 ($1,263) fine.

Look, I get it Representative Evans. I’d be mad too if I got merc’d in GTA Online by someone named xXGamerPiss420Xx. But there are better ways to hide your prodigious L than seeking to ban the sale of all violent video games. The link between violent games and actual violence has always been tenuous at best, and even if you did succeed, what would it truly accomplish?

Banning games doesn’t address any of the institutional problems that drive people to violent crime. People will still get evicted, go hungry, or freeze to death in their homes. And your constituents in Illinois’ 33rd district, the majority of whom are Black or Latinx and un- or underemployed, will still die of the coronavirus at disproportionately higher rates.

But at least they’ll have a slightly harder time getting their hands on one of the 300,000 iterations of GTA V, right?

The funny thing is your community already has a program in place to attempt to curb carjacking violence. Operation Safe Pump, an initiative that places security guards at gas stations in areas that see frequent carjackings is a thing that exists.

You’re already doing something substantive, do more of that and leave video games, one of the salves that’s gotten people through this hellscape of a pandemic, alone. Unless, that is, you wanna march down to Washington DC and break some kneecaps so we can finally get those $US2,000 ($2,526) stimulus checks.

Comments

  • I dunno, maybe start by banning guns first? Ain’t nobody ever got carjacked by being threatened with a box copy of GTA 5, as traumatic as that sounds.

  • What do you expect to happen when you lock shit down, making it impossible for people to work and inevitable for local and small business to close? And then you blame video games? No. The problem is unemployment. If their problem was vid games, they would be playing them…

  • Banning anything will cause a tsunami of lawyers to slam headfirst into the nearest courthouse. Great for us to laugh at the politicians, but terrible for all of the people having to hire lawyers because politicians want a scapegoat.

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