Senator Yee Says Gamers Have No Say in the Video Game Violence Debate

State Senator Leland Yee (D-San Francisco) has a lot to say about violence in video games and about the people that play those games. You may remember Senator Yee from 2005 fame. Back then he wrote a ban in California on ultra violent video games only to have it ripped from the books by a Supreme Court ruling declaring games to be protected by the 1st Amendment. Fast forward to 2011 when the Supreme Court ruled that there was no proof that video game violence caused violence in minors any more than any other media and most gamers thought this wild debate would eventually disappear.

In the wake of the extremely tragic Sandy Hook shooting though it seems both gun control and violent video games have been thrust back into the national spotlight. We are certainly all entitled to the opinions we have on both topics of course, but Senator Yee seems to want any opinions other than his own discounted from the conversation.

In an interview Tuesday with The San Francisco Chronicle, Senator Yee had this to say on gamers providing feedback:

“Gamers have got to just quiet down. Gamers have no credibility in this argument. This is all about their lust for violence and the industry’s lust for money. This is a billion-dollar industry. This is about their self-interest.”

Maybe I’m wrong but isn’t that similar to telling all gun owners that they have no say at all in any potential gun control laws? Or how about telling all women that they have no say in the current medical/female body debates simply because they are female and have a self interest in the topic? That’s not even mentioning the irony of any politician speaking about “credibility.”

Simply, are there violent video games? Of course. Are some of them best sellers? Indeed. But just like other industries, are there other types of video games in the top selling category that aren’t violent? You guessed it, also true. Regardless of which side of the debate you’re on though, is discounting the opinion of anyone on the opposing side a sound argument?

What do you think? Is Senator Yee on point or are his comments taking focus away from the debate itself and just inflammatory for the sake of being inflammatory?

The full article has some interesting and well thought out counter points and you can check it out here.