Calif. state Senator says gamers have 'no credibility' and a 'lust for violence'

California state Sen. Leland Yee believes that gamers lust for violence, lack credibility and need to be quiet, according to an article published in the San Francisco Gate.

"Gamers have got to just quiet down," Yee said. "Gamers have no credibility in this argument. This is all about their lust for violence and the industry's lust for money. This is a billion-dollar industry. This is about their self-interest."

Yee is also pessimistic about President Obama's recent directive to have the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study the link between video games, media images and violence.

"I'm hopeful that the president's intervention on this particular matter will make a difference, but I'm not that hopeful," Yee said.

"This is all about their lust for violence and the industry's lust for money."

Yee has long been a vocal critic of video games and the video game industry. A former child psychologist, he introduced a bill to the California State Assembly in 2005 that prohibited the sale or rental of violent video games to anyone under 18. According to the text of AB 1179, exposing minors to violent video games makes them "more likely to experience feelings of aggression, to experience a reduction of activity in the frontal lobes of the brain, and to exhibit violent antisocial or aggressive behavior."

In a 7 - 2 decision handed down on June 27, 2011, the U.S. Supreme court ruled the law unconstitutional (PDF link). According to the majority opinion written by Justice Antonin Scalia, video games "qualify for First Amendment protection" and the "Act imposes a restriction on the content of protected speech."

Last month, Yee called the National Rife Association's proposals in the wake of the Newtown, Connecticut shooting "pathetic and completely unacceptable," in part because "the NRA was completely silent" when the law Yu sponsored went before the Supreme Court. The NRA criticized the video game industry for being part of "a callous, corrupt and corrupting shadow industry that sells and sows violence against its own people."

You can read more in our storystream below to learn about the legislative initiatives, proposed studies and scrutiny that the video game industry has faced in the wake of the December shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary school that left 26 dead, including 20 children.

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