FC: Sell "violent" video games to a teenager, go to jail

From: Declan McCullagh (declanat_private)
Date: Fri Mar 08 2002 - 16:20:09 PST

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    Bill to keep violent games from minors
    Plan seeks fine, jail for video rental, sale
    March 5, 2002
    For sale or rent: a chance to sit around the rec room and kill cops.
    Blow up their cars with a bazooka, then machine-gun others and hear them
    Finally, squeeze the joystick of your Sony PlayStation to pick up a pair of
    prostitutes, spend time with them in your car, and afterward -- earning
    extra points now -- kick and beat them to the sidewalk, strutting off with
    blood on your shoes.
    The $49.95 video game, called Grand Theft Auto III, has been the hottest
    seller among console games since its November release, selling more than 2
    million copies, said a spokesman for manufacturer Rockstar Games in New York
    This week, three Lansing lawmakers plan to introduce a bill penalizing video
    stores that rent or sell such violent games to minors. Penalties could
    include fines of up to $1,000 and jail time.
    "We're totally not in the business of censorship," said state Rep. Patricia
    Lockwood, D-Fenton.
    "I'm a parent, too. All we're trying to do is make sure people are aware of
    what their kids are doing," said Lockwood, who was tipped to the game by a
    parent on her street.
    The bill would apply to games that carry industry ratings of "AO" for Adults
    Only (people older than 18) and "M" for Mature audiences (17 years and
    older), such as Grand Theft Auto III.
    [A good reason to oppose government-coerced rating systems... --Declan]
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