Much attention and time was spent last session debating Governor Blagojevich's proposal to place restrictions on the sale of violent video games to minors. Well, another wave of attention will likely result from the news that a federal judge has pulled the plug on the Violent Videogame law
According to CNN.com, Judge Matthew Kennelly called the law unconstitutional and enjoined the state from enforcing the same. In so doing, the judge stated that State officials "have come nowhere near" demonstrating that the law passes constitutional muster.
He continued, stating that "(i)n this country, the state lacks the authority to ban protected speech on the ground that it affects the listener's or observer's thoughts and attitudes.
This exact outcome was predicted by many of the opponents of the proposal as the bill was winding it's way through the General Assembly. Case in point, Dave Vite who showed the media that he can be as effective with his words as with his golf clubs:
"It's unfortunate that the state of Illinois spent taxpayer money defending this statute. This is precisely what we told them would happen," said David Vite, president of the Illinois Retail Merchants Association, one of the groups that sued over the law.
The biggest impact of this decision will likely have little to do with the bill itself. The ruling is likely to add fuel to the fire for the Governor's detractors who have consistently maintained that he is more interested in the sizzle than the steak. Conversely, I would expect the Governor's office to try to use this to their advantage by appealing the matter, which would have the convenient impact of being able to stretch his 'pro-family' crusade through the next elections.
As for me, I think it's time to break out Medal of Honor for a little bit.