"We are in the world of kids' popular culture. But it is not lightly to be suppressed."' So wrote Judge Richard A. Posner on behalf of a unanimous three judge panel for the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals in March 2001 in striking down, on First Amendment grounds, an Indianapolis ordinance that blocked minors' access to video games depicting violence. Judge Posner's erudite opinion could not have come at a more important time-a time when the entertainment industries in the United States seemingly are under government siege and when the media blame game is peaking. The judge's cogent reasoning and logic in American
Amusement Machine Assoc. v. Kendrick: seem, unfortunately, to be drowned out today by what can only be considered a hysterical narrative. It is a narrative created, in large part, by the news media and politicians in which society's problems with youth violence are largely foisted onto the products that primarily comprise and influence kids' culture at the tum of the new century-music, video games, and movies. Such a climate provides an ideal hothouse in which both legislation and lawsuits targeting video games can germinate and flourish.
Violence, Video Games, and A Voice of Reason: Judge Posner to the Defense of Kids' Culture and the First Amendment,
San Diego L. Rev.
Available at: https://digital.sandiego.edu/sdlr/vol39/iss1/2