April 26, 2010

Who could have imagined that one day the Supreme Court would take a case called Schwarzenegger...

... and Schwarzenegger would be arguing for preventing young people from viewing graphic depictions of violence? That day has come.

Don't worry kids. If you can't get your hands on those video games, you can sit quietly on the sofa and watch an old Schwarzenegger movie.

It's a game... between life and death...

28 comments:

knox said...

Jeez, Arnold really became a ridiculous politician with lightning speed. What a failure. What a doofus!

Salamandyr said...

I'm curious, can the state ban the sale/rental of R rated movies to kids and teens?

Many people are not aware that games are reviewed and rated by an organization called the ESRB, the Entertainment Software Review Board, that makes it a fairly easy task to see the proper age group for a particular game.

edutcher said...

Ann Althouse said...

Who could have imagined that one day the Supreme Court would take a case called Schwarzenegger and Schwarzenegger would be arguing for preventing young people from viewing graphic depictions of violence?

Being married to a Kennedy has been the ruination of many good people.

Alex said...

Yeah I remember the Arnie of "Conan the Barbarian". He wouldn't tolerate this girlie-man he's become.

AllenS said...

I'll be back.

Expat(ish) said...

(Aside: 2017 - remember when that was far in the future?)

I will say that as a pre-parent I engaged in a lot of activity I don't want my kids to see, let alone instigate. So I get that. I vividly remember, in my mid-20's, renting Risky Business as an appropriate movie for a 14 year old I was watching for a weekend. And popping the tape out (another anachronism) in horror very early on.

But the government isn't in charge of what my kids can watch, I am. Well, my wife is, but I'm delegated in her absence.

-XC

traditionalguy said...

In Hollywood the popular scripts of the 90s are not what is selling today. Arnold is staring in a new script, that's all.

bagoh20 said...

Let Arnold be a lesson. Regardless of what they claim to stand for, if being liked is important, they are useless. Arnold became exactly what he originally ran against.

He originally gave Californians an opportunity to prevent the current catastrophe, but the voters here voted against reforming things. He immediately switched sides. Even a large man cannot stand up without a spine.

Howard said...

C'mon, stop with all the moralistic and partisan bickering bullshit. The video game industry is killing the Big Hollywood Studio Movie Industry. Follow the money.

Arnold wants to hamstring his major competitor. The Governator is using his station to be a businessman on steroids.

Lincolntf said...

Anyone have the number for the Althouse "red phone"?
Just saw (at Ace of Spades HQ) that the cartoonist who started "Everybody Draw Mohammed Day" has backed down. So has the guy who started the EDMD Facebook page.
There is, however, now a 1,ooo+ member "Ban EDMD" Facebook page, which the cartoonist now supports.

former law student said...

and Schwarzenegger would be arguing for preventing young people from viewing graphic depictions of violence?

I guess I missed when Schwarzenegger was arguing for his films to get G or PG ratings. Or did Schwarzenegger refuse to sign into law a bill prohibiting minors from watching R and X rated movies?

former law student said...

The video game industry is killing the Big Hollywood Studio Movie Industry.

A pyrrhic victory if so: Electronic Arts lost $1 billion last year, laying off 28% of its employees.

damikesc said...

EA had games that performed startlingly poorly this past year and they are wisely cutting several of them.

And screw the nanny state nonsense. I've worked game retail and refusing to sell a game to a kid leads to nothing but parents griping. Why blame the drones who populate Best Buy or Gamestop?

Joe said...

Considering EAs absurd copy protection schemes and horribly crappy games (like C&C 4), they deserve to go out of business.

Salamandyr said...

I play violent video games, and ones with otherwise "mature" content, and I plan to be fairly tolerant of those kinds of games with my children.

However, that's my choice; I can't really get too up in arms over a law banning 12 year olds from buying M rated video games than I would one that forbade my child from going to R rated films, even though I let him watch them at home. I can always buy the game for them.

I don't care about the law one way or the other, but I find it fairly nonthreatening to our basic freedoms.

Cedarford said...

I think a guy is entitled to change his mind 15-30 years after his violent action movie heyday to question if too much graphic violence in entertainment may not be good for kids.

Without stupid insinuations that anyone who changes their mind is a hypocrite or flip-flopper.

While the Islamoids just kill anyone that rethinks being in radical Islam...extremists and strong ideologues in the West try using shame to lock the flock in on their ideology.

Rethinking unrestricted free trade is described as someone becoming a socialist and rejecting Saint Ronald.
A woman who says her abortion was a mistake on reflection and now wants counseling beforehand as a requirement to have an abortion is called a hypocrite.
A Romney saying he rethought abortion and now wants more restrictions is accused by Huckabee supporters as less morally pure than someone who thought abortion was evil at age 8, and of being a gutless hypocrite flip-flopper for coming and agreeing with Pastor Huckleberry followers.

damikesc said...

EA is doing a shoddy job of trying to compete with Steam with their revolutionary pay MORE online for a game than in store to have protection in case your computer crashes.

I oppose fining retail staff for selling the games, though, and that is likely what will happen.

Revenant said...

A new release is around $40 to $60 in a brick-and-mortar store. Where's a kid get $50? For that matter, how does he get to the store? Once he gets the game home, how does he play it without mom and dad noticing?

This is simply yet another example of parents offloading their responsibilities onto other people.

bagoh20 said...

I'm always surprised and saddened by how much people know about computer games.

lyssalovelyredhead said...

Expat(ish) said: "(Aside: 2017 - remember when that was far in the future?)"

I know! A few months ago, my husband and I caught some of Back to the Future II on cable- did you realize that movie takes place in 2015? We're just five years away from hoverboards on every corner, 3-D movie ads, and instant pizza! (and, I guess, 50 dollar pepsies)
- Lyssa

Eric said...

I'm always surprised and saddened by how much people know about computer games.

I feel the same way about television.

Eric said...

and, I guess, 50 dollar pepsies

At the time, a fifty dollar Pepsi wasn't hard to envision at all.

lyssalovelyredhead said...

Salamandyr, I'm always struck by people who let their kids play/watch R-rated video games. I know a few of the ones my husband has (we don't have kids) strike me as REALLY inappropriate for kids (I don't much care for them myself).

Growing up (I was a teen in the '90's), my parents wouldn't allow my sibs and I to watch most R rated movies, except a few that they screened first. I was always the odd gal out on that with my friends, even the ones who had really protective parents seemed to allow free range. But even then, it seemed weird to me that parents allow kids to watch movies with a lot of violence or graphic sex (of course I snuck around and saw a few, usually because my friends' parents were so permissive, but I understood why I wasn't allowed to).

I've always wondered why people do that- Can you explain why you plan to be permissive with it? (I'm not trying to scold you or argue or get you to change your plans, it's just something that honestly perplexes me, but I've never had the opportunity to ask anyone about it before.)

- Lyssa

former law student said...

it seemed weird to me that parents allow kids to watch movies with a lot of violence or graphic sex

The two are not necessarily equivalent. My parents expected us kids to grow up and have sex, as they had done, but they never imagined we would grow up and cut a stranger's head off with a length of barbed wire.

lyssalovelyredhead said...

FLS, I meant that allowing a child to watch movies with grapic violence, graphic sex, or both seems weird. That doesn't mean I'm comparing the two, other than the fact that they are generally accepted as not ideal entertainment for kids.

But then, while our parents probably expected us to have sex, most movie sex is not particularly the type they probably expected (or at least hoped) we would have (i.e., commitment free or otherwise not particularly well thought out). You don't see a lot of movies (yeah, there are a rare few) graphically depicting married or seriously committed people having sex, although I imagine that's what most parents would want for their kids.
- Lyssa

Salamandyr said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Salamandyr said...

Hi Lyssa,

Sorry for the late response. Life got in the way and I hadn't reviewed the thread in a while.

I care more about context than I do about violence or sex, per se. Take, for instance, "Die Hard", a bloody R-rated action movie, about an imperfect, but committed, family man, who is thrust in a situation where he has to save his family and everyone else at no little cost to himself. Yes, it's violent; yes, the language is salty; but it's built around the kind of classical moral value system I want to inculcate in my children. Contrast this with, say, Pulp Fiction, a film that revels in nihilism. The first, I am comfortable viewing with a young-ish child, but the second, not so much, even though "Die Hard" is arguably more violent.

Or consider the game "Mass Effect", which caused so much tumult a year or so again. It's pretty much a standard science fiction story, no different from Star Trek. And yes, the player, playing the protagonist, is allowed to seduce the occasional lovely companion. It was neither graphic, nor gratuitous, merely another complexity to the story. And then there is "Bioshock", which is very violent, and very scary, and not at all appropriate for young children, but is one of the best remonstrations on Objectivism I've ever seen. I'd have no problem letting a child old enough to read Atlas Shrugged play the game. Again, it's about context; "Half-Life" is as violent as "Postal", but one has its violence within an appropriate framework, the other is merely a simulator of anti-social behavior.

I grew up on un-bowdlerized mythology, Westerns, Star Wars, & James Bond. I played Dungeons & Dragons and no orc was safe. Heroic tales are the stuff of childhood, and are as important to proper development as stories that promote sharing and environmentalism, to name two values entirely too focussed on by modern children's entertainment. Have no fear; I do not plan on plopping a 6 year old in front of "Hard Boiled". Nor do I plan on forcefeeding such fare to my children. But by the time they're old enough (10-12) to actually want to play those kinds of games, or watch those kinds of movies, they'll be old enough to have some kind of dialogue about what they mean.

I didn't really touch on sex here, but they track similarly with my views on violence. I'm not bothered by the occasional representation of immodesty or immorality, to the extent that it is not "normative".

A.W. said...

Ann, this cartoon seem apropos to your point...

http://www.virtualshackles.com/107/