February 23, 2021 ESA has issued a statement on the proposed Illinois legislation.
A rash of car crashes in Chicago over the past year has, of course, led some to point fingers at violent video games. Now, an Illinois lawmaker wants to change a state restriction on the sale of violent games to minors so that it bans the sale of violent games to anyone – and will define depictions of motor vehicle theft as violence.
Following the initial publication of this article, a representative of the Entertainment Software Association, the largest gaming industry organization in the US, reached out with the following statement: “While our industry understands and shares the concerns of what has happened in Chicago, there is simply no evidence for a connection between interactive entertainment and real-world violence. We believe that the solution to this complex problem lies in thoroughly examining the actual factors that drive such behavior rather than mistakenly attributing blame to video games based solely on speculation. ”
There were 1,417 reported car stops in Chicago in 2020, double the number that occurred a year earlier, as the Chicago Sun-Times reports. It has been a big enough issue to encourage efforts like Operation Safe Pump, which has a private security company exhibiting guards at local gas stations as a deterrent.
“The bill would ban the sale of some of these games that promote the activities we suffer in our community,” Evans told the Sun-Times. He adds that games like Grand Theft Auto have “become a major problem in this spectrum. When you compare the two, you see tough similarities when it comes to these car cuts. ”
The amendment would also repeal a section of the existing penal code that requires retailers to display a two-inch ’18’ mark on all violent games. (I have to assume it disappears because it was never enforced.)
It’s 2021, and here I’m writing about the efforts to ban violent video games. If you had told me for a decade that we would still be talking about politicians trying to blame bigger problems on video games, well … I think I’ll have to believe you, because maybe nothing ever really changes.