August 18, 2005

You Can Make It, But You Can't Buy It

According to, U.S. Representative Chris Bell is planning on running for Governor of Texas in 2006. One of his major platforms is said to be to "ban violent video games."

Well, I can look at this one of two ways: as a voter or as an employee of the video game industry. Let's look at it both ways just to be clear.

As a voter, I will not tolerate further encroachments of my rights under the First Amendment. If you want to mandate ID checks to purchase M- and AO-rated games, that's one thing and I would fully support such a bill, but if you want to keep those games away from the citizens of Texas, then you're obviously not going to get my vote.

As an employee in the video game industry, I just want to point out that Texas is home to several dozen companies who make the very titles you want banned, including id, Gearbox, Ritual, and others. id Software alone has brought over one billion dollars to the Texas economy.

If you think that these companies are going to stay in Texas if you ban their products from being sold, you are sorely mistaken.

If you want valid issues for Texas, there are plenty. You can try to address how local school boards are more concerned over politics and property taxes than they are about teaching students. You can try to address increasing corruption of elected officials at the local government level. You can try to help curb the increasing amounts of debt that are burying Texas families.

...Or you can continue on this path and lose several billion in income in the state and make Texas seem like more of a "hick" state than it already does.

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