Another proposed bill to restrict the rental or sale of games to minors has been stricken down today. US chief district judge James M. Rosenbaum upheld a suit filed by the Entertainment Software Association and Entertainment Merchants Association to block a Minnesota law today, deeming it unconstitutional.
In May, Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty signed into law a bill that would fine minors $25 for purchasing or renting games rated M for Mature or AO for Adults Only and required retailers to post appropriate signage detailing the law in stores, much like alcohol warnings in liquor stores. The law was scheduled to go into effect tomorrow until today's ruling shot it down.
Like other game laws that were blocked before it, Judge Rosenbaum said the Minnesota law invalidly violates the First Amendment, which protects games as a form of free speech.
The state argued that the law would protect "the psychological well-being of minors" and foster "children's moral and ethical development." However, the judge's decision stated that the state failed to provide "empirical support for its belief that 'violent' video games cause psychological harm to minors."