Sick of seeing the blood, guts and boobs plaster all over those pesky cabinets kept in the gaming equivalent of opium dens known as arcades? If only the cowabunga youth of today would put down their skateboards and Gameboys for one minute, and just get some damn fresh air, they’d feel the benefit.
To this end, New Jersey Assemblywoman Linda Stender has announced that she plans to “…introduce legislation that prohibits any kind of public accommodation—movie theaters, rest stops, bowling alleys, arcades—from making games rated Mature or Adults Only available to the public for play.”
When every kind of violent tittilation imaginable is freely available on the internet, it’s nice to believe that the children of today get their pre-pubescent rocks off to the game cabinets at the arcade. If for one second we allow ourselves to pretend that these cabinets exist, then the law is somewhat understandable, given the media’s hysterial attitude towards children seeing adults-only content. But is education the answer? Honesty? No. Screaming “DON’T LOOK OVER THERE!” while pointing in the direction of the problem seems to be the method that works best.
That someone in a position of power should see themselves as fit to pass laws on an area of life that she has absolutely no knowledge of, and has not sought any advice on, is typically short-sighted. Her aim is to look tough on immorality while actually doing nothing, or what amounts to less than nothing. She’s invented something with the intention of banning it, and now all anyone can think about is the potential for X-rated arcade cabinets.
Her law rides the coat tails of the much more successful and long-standing code of practice that games retailers have abided by for twenty years, that of adults accompanying children when buying Mature rated video games. The system was recently codified by an FCC report as being the most effective way of limiting children’s access to mature content.
Her press release continues, “For the purposes of this bill, “place of public accommodation” means any inn, tavern, roadhouse, hotel, motel, trailer camp, summer camp, day camp, or resort camp…” so parents, rest assured: next time little Jimmy wants to pay Boobs ‘n’ Guts 4 on the arcade machine at his local tavern, you have the weight of Assemblywoman Linda Stender on your side.