The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

July 1, 2011 -

The Daily Show with Jon Stewart takes a few jabs at the Supreme Court's ruling on Brown v. EMA. At first glance it seems like Stewart goes hard after videogames, using several admittedly gratuitous video clips from the new Mortal Kombat game. As the first scene unfolds on the monitor Stewart feigns holding back on vomiting and screams, during the second scene he makes a joke about the female character having a wardrobe malfunction. In between he throws a joke in about Super Mario Boners (a Photoshop of a Super Mario Galaxy cover with a huge fleshy erection).

Stewart's point is one that many are making this week; that sex is even taboo at the Supreme Court and that sexual imagery continues not to be treated on the same footing as depictions of gratuitous violence.

Point taken and noted.

But the most interesting part of that episode is the beginning of an interview with the Weekly Standard's Bill Kristol. In case you don't know him, besides his day job at the conservative publication, Kristol is a regular guest of Fox News Sunday and other daily Fox news programs. We don't want to put any words in Krisol's mouth or paraphrase what he says so we encourage you to watch the clip with him in it here.

Unfortunately banning violent videogames is not an issue that can be decided across party lines; both Republicans and Democrats would like to see some sort of government regulations on the sale of videogames across the board. The other thing that they have in common is that they have absolutely no idea how the ESRB works and how retailers enforce it to insure that "Mature" rated games don't ever get in the hands age groups they aren't meant for.

The only ones with a consistent view on First Amendment rights these days are libertarians. That's the truth whether we like it or not.

Anyway you can check out the clip entitled "Moral Kombat" to your left. Note to the Daily Show: The title of the segment has already been taken by a certain documentary about videogames. Look it up.

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Comments

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

i forgot to add that yes i know Libertarian's are a realy old palitickel groop dating back a long time i just ment as a rool

 

am dyslexic and have a learning disablement from when i died as a baby and sustained brain damage do to lack of oxygen pleas pardon my bad spelling and grammar

 

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am dyslexic and have a learning disablement from when i died as a baby and sustained brain damage do to lack of oxygen pleas pardon my bad spelling and grammar-

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

 "The only ones with a consistent view on First Amendment rights these days are libertarians. That's the truth whether we like it or not."

Hence one of the main reasons I consider myself a Libertarian rather then a Liberal now. Even though i disagree with some of their policies a.k.a. - Intellectual Property and some of their economic and fiscal platforms.

 "No law means no law" - Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black on the First Amendment

"No law means no law" - Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black on the First Amendment

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

 Libertarian's can come from eather party and a lot of them tend to come form indapendints who gro in to it or  republickins/demacrats that become disinfranchised with there own partys way of doing things

 

am dyslexic and have a learning disablement from when i died as a baby and sustained brain damage do to lack of oxygen pleas pardon my bad spelling and grammar

 

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am dyslexic and have a learning disablement from when i died as a baby and sustained brain damage do to lack of oxygen pleas pardon my bad spelling and grammar-

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

Same. It angers me that some gamers will defend GTA's right to exist but will also call for Rapeplay to be banned.

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Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it's over they have the same positions they started in.

---------------------------------------------------- Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it's over they have the same positions they started in.

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

Just a quick question for those who saw the segment?

Did it seem like Jon Stewart supports restrictions on violent video games or; does he just think it's rediculous that violence in media can't be regulated but sexual content can? I can't see Jon being an enemy of Free Speech here. Did it seem like he supported the law that was struck down or not?

 "No law means no law" - Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black on the First Amendment

"No law means no law" - Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black on the First Amendment

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

I think he supports it.

He was showing a clip from Mortal Kombat, and was sort of saying that while showing a character being ripped in half is ok, if there was a nip slip,  insta-ban.

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

Nip slips are regulated on public air by the FCC, there is a case coming next session about the government's censoring through the FCC and if it constitutional.  Also Stewart is wrong; nudity has been in videogames for years now.  Did boobs in games go before the SC?  Nope, just violence.  They wanted a new allowance in the 1st Amendment to proclaim violence to be on par with sexual obscenity (not plain old sex, lets be clear) so as to be able to ultimately BAN it.

 

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

The reason he brings it up is because Scalia mentioned in his opinion that sex in games can still be regulated at least in terms of sale to minors.

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Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it's over they have the same positions they started in.

---------------------------------------------------- Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it's over they have the same positions they started in.

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

Most likely if it can be deemed obscene.

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

Watch the video for your self. I'm not trying to seem rude but it's there in its entirety so you don't need us to tell you about it.

If you're just curious what other people's opinions are, I think he may have gone for it if it specifed really gory violence (on the level of Mortal Kombat or God of War), instead of the vague law that California had.

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Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it's over they have the same positions they started in.

---------------------------------------------------- Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it's over they have the same positions they started in.

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

I couldn't get the video to work. Tried to look for it elsewhere and wouldn't work either that why i'm asking? Anyways if it true i lost all respect i once had for Stewart.

I always though he was a libertarian liberal type not a nanny-statist (please think of the children) type. I also think he will lose alot of his teenage and young adult fan base if he's supporting these kind of laws. As for me i stopped watching his show about 6 months ago. Just didn't find him that funny anymore and his political views didn't align to my political viewpoints as much anymore. Still can't believe he might agree with this shit though. I'm kind of flabbergasted.

 "No law means no law" - Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black on the First Amendment

"No law means no law" - Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black on the First Amendment

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

In another clip he said (paraphrased) "If the game has disemboweling in it, then you shouldn't be allowed to sell it to 10 year olds"

I disagree with him but I still respect the man.

He never said he agreed with the California law, just said there should be some level of violence you can't sell to kids.

Oh and he made fun of Arnold for supporting this bill while starring in violent movies.

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Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it's over they have the same positions they started in.

---------------------------------------------------- Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it's over they have the same positions they started in.

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

Banning 10 year olds is one thing, but to ban those in the 14 to 17 yo high school range as this law would have done is another thing.

Esspecially, when a large part of Jon's viewing audience are politcally minded teenagers in that age bracket. When i was a hard-core left-wing socialist at 14, i would have loved watching Stewart more then i did as an adult.

 "No law means no law" - Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black on the First Amendment

"No law means no law" - Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black on the First Amendment

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

Well when it comes to stewert's reaction to not banning material to minors, it was less about the specific law and more along the lines of not being able to place any restictions at all; which is a very open statement

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

No it is not taken; the Supreme Court's view on Sex is not different than Violence.  Sexual material is only restricted to children if it fails the Miller test which would mean that the material is obscene (having no artistic merit or value).  Children are not restricted by law from seeing an R rated film with graphic sexual scenes.  The Court actually holds game violence to the same standard as film.  But it has never held that violence even graphic was obscenity.

 

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

Incorrect.

Material that fails the Miller test is restricted from ADULTS.  If sexual content fails the miller test it is illegal to own, produce, or sell.. and yes, there is plenty of non-kiddy porn out there that is illegal under US law and yes there are people in jail for it.  BDSM producers live under constant risk of being arrested under obscentiy laws.

Sexual material that is restricted from minors has a much lower standard then the miller test.  Below that even there is 'indecency', which is being challenged next term in Fox vs FCC.

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

to be exact material that fails the milller's test just has no constitutional protection under the 1st amendment. As such the government can make any kind of laws they want against it. This include regular porn which is restricted to minors but allowed for adults, and also include the very sick kind of pron that is outright banned... So only some of the material that fails the millar test is resticted to adults

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

It is not illegal to own or possess Obscene material a.k.a. - check out the SCOTUS case Stanley vs. Georgia. It is merely illegal to produce and distribute it.

IMHO, Obscenity laws have no basis whatever in the constitution. I don't believe the government can ban or restrict speech on the basis that it is disgusting or offensive and under some vague and subjective standard of having or lacking merit. If anything these laws are a form of judicial activism as the court ruled obscenity is not protected by Free Speech despite the fact that nothing in the constitution mentioned that obscenity (whatever it may be a.k.a.- in tthe end it's all subjective) is NOT protected. I think this is also one of Hugo Black's (a strict constitutionalist and originalist even more so then Scalia) arguments against obscenity laws.

 "No law means no law" - Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black on the First Amendment

"No law means no law" - Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black on the First Amendment

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

It is not illegal to own or possess Obscene material a.k.a. - check out the SCOTUS case Stanley vs. Georgia. It is merely illegal to produce and distribute it.

Exactly right in that case the Supreme Court invalidated all state laws that forbid the private possession of materials judged obscene, on the grounds of the 1st and 14th Amendments. 

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

US law does treat sex differently from violence. From the first page of SCOTUS' Brown vs. EMA decision:

"The most basic principle—that government lacks the power to restrict expression because of its message, ideas, subject matter, or content, Ashcroft v. American Civil Liberties Union, 535 U. S. 564, 573—is subject to a few limited exceptions for historically unprotected speech, such as obscenity, incitement, and fighting words."

The point? Obscenity, along with incitement and fighting words, are not protected speech under the First Amendment and this has historically been the case. The Miller test determines whether or not sexually explicit material qualifies as obscene material and if not, it doesn't fall under the protection of the First Amendment and can be regulated by government. Lacking artistic (or political, scientific, or literary value) is merely one of the three prongs of the test.

And as a final note, children are restricted (hence the R) from seeing an R-rated movie on their own.  

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

You say it yourself, the test determines if sexually explicit material is obscene.  So, Sexually explicit material is protected speech unless it fails the Miller Test.  Kind of an innocent until proven guilty thing.

  The only difference is obviously, sexual material goes through the Millar test, and violence doesn't.  But let’s be honest, another difference is that when it comes to sex, it is allowed in film etc. from imitating sex, all the way to actually filming penetration between the "actors", while violence in film and games has always been simulated.  Perhaps when people begin making films of actual murder, we will see a similar treatment of violence.  But as it stands today, the law treats videogame violence (simulated violence) as having the same protections as sex (simulated and in some cases real). 
 
Last Children are restricted by industry practice from seeing an "R" rated film on their own, but as I pointed out as well as other posters, they are not restricted by actual force of law (just like games now).  I see equal treatment and parity between sex and violence; it's simply the anecdotal misconception of restrictions due to sex being law while it is not.

 

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

As a FINAL final note, no, the R rating in movies do not carry any weight of law.  If a movie theater so wishes they can have a sale on R rated tickets to minors.  The MPAA might get in a huff, but the government cannot and will not get involved.

-Ultimately what will do in mankind is a person's fear of their own freedom-

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

They are not restricted by law, which was his point. The legal consequences for letting a child in to an R rated movie on their own are the same as selling an M-rated game to a child. There are no legal consequences.

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

Well unless the R rated movie is porn. Nothing is stopping the MPAA from giving a porno an R rating. They don't do it and it would be a terrible business decision but they can still do it if they really wanted to.

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Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it's over they have the same positions they started in.

---------------------------------------------------- Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it's over they have the same positions they started in.

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

I think the main point a lot of people (including Stewert) were trying to make this week is violence is more harmful than sex, so whether nudity is given the same or worse treatment, it's wrong. At least, that's the sentiment I was getting.

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

Indeed, people juse assume there arte since the MPAA has been around longer.

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

As i pointed out in the shoutbox, what dissapointed me most was the fact that it was pretty obvious stewart has no, or very little clue about the ESRB, the way it works, and that it's amazingly effective. When people fail to mention that aspect, it makes it sound like the whole reason was because the industry really does want minors to buy MK and other violent games.

Still i like the guy, he makes me laugh and that's why i watch so I'll cut him some slack :)

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

Actually Stewart does know about the ESRB, he talked about it when he started bashing congressmen for hating on games (I'm not sure what the House was trying to do).

It's from 2006 but it's really funny

http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/wed-june-21-2006/headlines---player-ha...

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Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it's over they have the same positions they started in.

---------------------------------------------------- Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it's over they have the same positions they started in.

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

That makes his tone and choice to not mention it all the stranger really.

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

Its a comedy news show. Its about taking news and twisting jokes out of it. All you have to ask is "what would make for a funny joke?"

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

Granted, ya, the bit was all for the joke.  But even the convo with Bill after that bit gave a bit more insight to Jon's whole view of it.  I think he is just ignorant of the protections the industry already has in place.  Like others, he most likely doesn't know the protections in place at the retail level.

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There are only 10 types of people in this world, people who know binary and people who don't.

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There are only 10 types of people in this world, people who know binary and people who don't.

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

I still need to pick up this game. =\

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

if you get the PS3 version, add JitteryJordan, you'll probably kick my ass. 

Re: The Daily Show Takes on SCOTUS Video Game Ruling

Nah, but my boyfriend probably will, given his fascination with the series.

 
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james_fudgeEnjoy my comedy stylings.10/02/2014 - 7:10am
james_fudgehttp://www.breitbart.com/Breitbart-London/2014/10/02/It-s-been-real-GameJournoPros-prepares-to-close-its-doors10/02/2014 - 7:09am
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james_fudgeprh99: Whether you agree with the article or not, fighting alleged censorship with censorship is hella lame10/02/2014 - 4:27am
james_fudgewhoever made that decision at Intel will regret it later on down the road. Boycotts are tricky business.10/02/2014 - 4:26am
prh99The unflattering characterization "They don’t know how to dress or behave." & "‘Games culture’ is a petri dish of people who know so little about how human social interaction..." probably didn't help.10/02/2014 - 1:52am
prh99Probably not many as it was purely a vindictive move. The headline alone was plenty of ammo, but for those that did read and complain..10/02/2014 - 1:42am
Andrew EisenI wonder how many of those who complain about that article actually read past the headline.10/02/2014 - 1:37am
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Andrew EisenWell, time to eat some dinner and work on the Hyrule Warriors guide until bedtime!10/02/2014 - 12:11am
Andrew EisenJust finished my stream. That... could have gone better. Technical issues prevented me from playing a console game so I instead played and bitched about The Walking Dead for two hours. Oh well, the folks watching still seemed to enjoy it.10/02/2014 - 12:09am
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