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NJ To Ban Video Games In Public Places?

Video games containing mature and adult content would be banned in public places under legislation set to be introduced by Assemblywoman Linda Stender.

Video games.
Flickr User RebeccaPollard

“Games that have been labeled mature or with adult content would not be available in public places so that children would be prevented from playing these games,” said Stender.

The bill comes on the heels of a report from the New Jersey SAFE Task Force on Gun Protection, Addiction, Mental Health and Families, and Education Safety released by the state Attorney General Wednesday, that listed the regulation of violent video games among its recommendations to mend the root causes of mass violence.

“There’s just not any benefit to having kids have access to games that are teaching them to be first person shooters. They are murder simulators, many of these games,” said Stender.

Stender says there have been several studies on violent video games that show they have a negative impact on children, and can increase aggressive behavior.

The ban would include public places like hotels, summer camps, boardwalks, movie theaters, amusement parks, bowling alleys, and retail shops.

“Children today are exposed to violent images more than ever. Violent video games can desensitize children to violence and give them a warped version of reality where violence and death have no consequences outside their TV screens,” said Stender.

Under the legislation, anyone found in violation of the ban would face a monetary penalty of no more than $10,000 for a first offense. Second offense penalties would be no more than $20,000.

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