California's proposed law to ban the sale of violent video games to minors was shot down when the Supreme Court declared it unconstitutional on a 7-2 vote this morning. Justice Scalia blew up the proposed legislation, stating that the ban would have violated minors' First Amendment rights. In the court's majority opinion, Scalia wrote that the state shouldn't be allowed to, "restrict the ideas to which children may be exposed," before going on to cite several gory fairy tales that we regularly subject our children to. Meanwhile, Mayoral hopeful Leland Yee, who wrote the proposed law in the state senate, probably isn't pleased with the outcome.
Yee already had a press conference scheduled today to discuss the topic, so expect him to take that opportunity to score some points with the Soccer Mom/Tipper Gore fanbase. We can't wait to see if he suddenly decides to speak out against this exciting "underwater stealth simulation" in which players aim to harpoon sharks while greedily grabbing at treasure.
Justice Clarence Thomas got out the earmuffs and also disagreed with the ruling, stating that freedom of speech does not include the right to speak to children (or the right of children to access speech) without first getting parental permission.
UPDATE: Over at the Appeal, Bay City News brings us the report from Yee's press conference. The state senator said of the ruling: "Unfortunately, the majority of the Supreme Court once again put the interests of corporate America before the interests of our children." Yee told the press that he will "absolutely" consider writing a narrower bill that stands a better chance of holding up in court.