This happened last week, but we were so busy reading the epic comment section from that gag-inducing engagement video post that we didn’t get around to writing about it.
Anyway, the goober pictured above is State Rep Will Fourkiller (D). Apparently he wasn’t satisfied with the Republican wackos in the state legislature getting all the attention, so he filed a bill that would impose a 1% excise tax on…oh no!…violent video games.
A new proposal at the state capitol would make a financial impact on Oklahoma gamers. We’re talking about a tax on violent video games. State Representative Will Fourkiller has been a teacher, coach and even a registered nurse.
He says he saw firsthand how video games can lead to obesity and says research shows they can lead to bullying.
He points to one reported incident.
“A gentleman shot a police officer and stole his car,” Fourkiller says. “He had been playing Grand Theft Auto.”
He can’t believe there’s actually a video game called “Bully” because he says bullying is often what happens when kids play these games.
“Not everybody is going to react the same,” Fourkiller says. “But I believe after hours and hours of watching the screen, playing the video game, being that person and taking on that role, people get desensitized.”
Fourkiller says he’s not targeting the video game industry, but does want to tax these games.
He’s introduced HB 2696, which would place an excise tax of 1 percent on violent games that carry a software rating of Teen, Mature, or Adult Only.
The money collected would go toward the state’s Childhood Outdoor Education Revolving Fund to fight obesity and the Bullying Prevention Revolving Fund.
Yeah…this is an excellent idea. My only question is why just limit it to “violent” and mature video games? Why not just tax them all? The problem with kids playing video games is not that the games are too violent, it’s that the kids are inside playing video games! They should be playing catch or building an inside-fort in their bedroom with blankets.
The concern about violence in video games thing is way overrated. To steal from the NRA manual, “Video games don’t kill people, people kill people.’ Plus, I’d rather set on an airplane next to some dude who plays Grand Theft Auto and Call of Duty instead of the weirdos who have Sims characters and know who Sid Meier is.
And if we’re going to tax video games for being violent and making people lethargic and lazy, shouldn’t we tax TV shows and movies, too? Just about any episode of Law N’ Order, Desperate Housewives or CSI is much more violent and disturbing than anything you’ll see in Halo. I bet you burn more calories playing Rock Band III – it would be on the tax list – than you would watching the Dark Knight on Netflix. You’d eat less, too. You don’t see many gamers chowing down on popcorn and M&Ms while killing someone with a sniper rifle.
It will be interesting to see if this gets anywhere. Our state legislators are experts in the art of fun-hating, but I can’t see them actually voting for any sort of tax increase in an election year. The odds of this thing passing are about as high as Ralph Shortey’s IQ. I don’t think that’s very high.
Thanks! Your message has been sent!