DebraLee Hovey Calling For New Tax On Violent Video Games to Fund Mental Health Services

by Categorized: Sandy Hook Date:

\"debraleeState Rep. DebraLee Hovey, a Republican whose district includes Sandy Hook, is proposing a new sales tax on video games rated \”mature.\”

Hovey is calling for a 10 percent tax; all of the money would be earmarked for the state Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services to pay for material to educate parents and others about the dangers of violent video games.

Specifically, the material will aim to \”educate families on the warning signs of video game addiction and antisocial behavior,\’\’ the bill states.

On Monday, the bill was transferred from the legislature\’s public health committee to finance, revenue and bonding.

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32 thoughts on “DebraLee Hovey Calling For New Tax On Violent Video Games to Fund Mental Health Services

  1. Dan

    Rep. Hovey,

    All the taxes in the world will not make parents pay attention, or at the very least, act upon the violent video games their children insist on playing.

    At least you are not trying to take my guns in this bill.

    Best regards,

  2. Tanya Bachand

    Put Hovey on the list of people to target for a primary. This is a ridiculous bill that will solve nothing. Its a back door attempt to get more tax revenue for the ever hungry and ever growing beast that is the Connecticut government. Hovey not only should be ashamed of this embarrassing piece of legislation, she ought to be run out of office. Using a slaughter of innocents to grab more taxes, absolutely disgusting.

    1. Just Curious

      Tanya, – is Sen. Beth Bye’s bill outlining a 50% tax on ammunition not “using a slaughter of innocents to grab more taxes” and is not “absoutely disgusting?” Should she be targeted for a primary and run clear out of office? Just curious.

  3. susan

    We should ban these video games, as it teaches children how to kill indiscriminately using all kinds of assault weapons. When these children grow-up into adulthood and acquire these weapons, they’re ready to go on a killing spree without feeling, like Mr. Lanza. They need to be banned, like the assault weapons used in these videos.

    1. Dan

      The violent games are rated for 17 and over. Its not the kids fault that bad and/or lazy Parents buy these types over games. Yes I play violent games but I’m also 22 and I know better. I say parents should not be able to buy these games before the cashier explains what is in the game. A ban is against the first amendment and they are protected by it. If your narrow mind can figure out how to use Google look it up. By the way movies and music are just as bad so your argument is invalid. Have a nice narrow minded life.

    2. Jeff

      Oh shut it Susan. You have to be at least 17 or 18 I believe to buy them so anyone younger than that has to have an adult buy it for them! So it would be the parents fault for letting their child play such games.

    3. Dan

      By the way “assault weapons” don’t exist. Assault rifles are real, “assault weapons” is a word that some narrow minded person made up.

    4. Johngaltwhereru

      We should stop Governing to the lowest common denominator.

      Millions of copies of Halo have been sold, never mind all the other violent video games. Blaming video games for insanity is just as idiotic as blaming weapons for insanity.

      We need to stop being politically correct about the problems our society faces. The school shootings are a mental health problem with a dash of the attention they get in 24 hour news channels.

      Trying to end insane people from killing school children by banning guns and video games will be just as futile as trying to end inner city poverty by throwing money and benefits at the problem rather than correcting the graduation rates, teen pregnancy rates and unwed mother rates.

    5. Gusty

      A) Call of Duty doesn’t teach you how to use guns, in fact the way guns are used in violent games 99% of the time will not lead u to be able to operate that firearm in real life. B) Assault Weapon is not a legitimate term it is simply a term created in the 80’s when anti-violence groups couldn’t ban handguns so they had to target another market, so the term “Assault Weapon” was coined. C) Violent video games are actually proven to decrease violence in society because it allows individuals who are violent in nature to act out their fantasy’s in a digital world instead of in real life. Japan is a perfect example of this, video games are much more violent and they have extremely low violent crime rates.
      I study crime and criminality and am a firearms enthusiast, I know what I’m talking about.

      1. Kim

        Gusty – thanks for the post. I am an NRA member and strong supporter of the 2nd Amendment. I am against more regulations and am appalled at the loose language being used in this debate (e.g. assault weapons).

        That being said, I have read studies that show that although video games may not teach one to shoot a gun, they do tend to improve accuracy when non-shooters are tested on a range. This, because many video games award higher points for ‘head shots’.

        I’m not saying I disapprove of these games at all. In fact, studies like this are likely what prompts the military to seek out video gamers to enlist.

  4. Sam

    Politicians are an amazing breed. Only in Connecticut would a terrible tragedy such as what happened in Newtown be a reason for adding another higher tax on something. Lets see first there was the idea for a huge 50 or 100%tax on guns and ammo, and now a bill for an extra 10% tax on video games. (so would that make the tax 16.5 percent now? 10 plus the regular sales tax?) Lets not try to fix the real problem with violent video games and media, lets just tax it lol. Why not try to ban certain types of video games from being sold like they are trying to ban certain scary looking rifles? Is the media and video game industry a bigger political contributor? I guess more tax is the Ct way to makes things better. It says in the article that the money would be earmarked for the Department of Mental Health and Addiction. Well wasn’t the lottery supposed to be used to just fund education in connecticut way back when? In this state the money doesnt alway get appropriated as it is originally intended. This will just be more money for the general fund to be wasted by our Ct “Spendocrats.

    1. BearDogg-X

      Because “violent” video games are protected free speech under the First Amendment as ruled by the US Supreme Court 18 months ago in Brown(Schwarzenegger) v. EMA.

    2. BearDogg-X

      As far as Hovey’s pile of garbage bill goes, besides being a knee-jerk reaction to a tragedy, it is unconstitutional as written as it violates the First Amendment(in spite of a US Supreme Court decision 18 months ago saying “violent” media is protected free speech) and Fourteenth Amendment(due process under the law, as she is not trying to tax R-rated/unrated movies or music CD’s with “Parental Advisory” stickers).

      Hovey should also realize that violent crime has fallen since 1991 to levels not seen since 1971 according to the FBI and that it has never been conclusively proven that “violent” media “causes” violent crime(also never been proven that the Newtown shooter even played video games). In fact, the studies into the matter showed that if there were “effects”, they were the same as watching Bugs Bunny cartoons.

      Hovey should do Connecticut a favor and withdraw her unconstitutional legislation.

      1. Kim

        If liberals succeed in gutting the 2nd Amendment and confiscating the weapons owned by honest, law-abiding citizens, do you think they’ll have any hesitation banning these video games and/or making it a crime to own them?

        Next: turning millions of video game owners into criminals, overnight.

        Followed by: criminalizing certain religious texts and beliefs, such as Scientology, Mormonism, Buddhism, Islam, maybe even Catholicism and/or Christianity. It all depends on who is in charge at the moment.

        Think carefully before taking away freedoms – you’ll NEVER get them back

  5. malvi lennon

    I hate violent video games because I believe they desensitize kids and contribute to our culture of violence. Having said that I do not support a higher tax to fund mental health, because a) politicians will spend the money on everything expect mental health and b) it will not make parents more responsible. If you do not monitor what your kid does in the bedroom or the basement for hours on end a 10% will not make you do so.
    I would support legislation that removes violent videos from the open access and places them behind the counter, available only to people over 21 years old. We did that with alcohol and it has helped bring down teenage drunk driving incidents. Why not do the same to these videos?

    1. Dan

      What about violent movies? Parents still buy tickets for R rated movies or look at the news that is on in every house hold in the morning and night. You can’t ban one thing without banning every thing.

      1. Common_Tator

        DON’T BAN THEM ! ! ! That violates the 1rst Ammendment, JUST TAX the CRAP out of MOVIES WITH GUNS and “GAMES” with GUNS ! Then they will be around FOREVER like tobacco – ’cause – They need your money! Un-huh, un-huh!

        1. Kim

          let’s tax the crap out of anyone who uses CAPS to make a point. Or anyone who thinks their religion is the only religion worth believing in. Or anyone who pretends they honor our constitution and bill of rights, while suggesting that ANY amendment be modified or banned for any reason.

    2. BearDogg-X

      Because “violent” video games are protected free speech under the First Amendment of the US Constitution. The US Supreme Court ruled as such 18 months ago.

      Besides that, there is no concrete evidence that “violent” media “causes” violent crime. In fact, violent crime rates have fallen since 1991 to levels not seen since 1971 as “violent” video games have become more popular.

      Also, parents/adults buy the vast majority of video games anyway(as in roughly 95% of all game sales).

  6. The Conn-servative

    Ya know,liberals are masters at having others peoples “sin taxes” implemented,but at the same time want ALL of society to pay for what they enjoy: contraceptives thru the Obamacare mandate. If I thru my taxes must be forced to pay for one’s sexual promiscuity, then they should be forced to pay for my ski ticket this weekend to Mt Snow, or my 200 rounds of ammo I’ll need at the range, or even the $50 I’ll need to get around in the car this week to get to work to help pay for their contraceptives!! Sheer lunatics! This tax would probably go to help create state mental health, top heavy jobs for idiots who have a phd (Piled Higher + Deeper),who once a year will report to the legislature about all of the wonderful things they discovered in the past year about mental health, not actually solving any problems.

    1. WildBill

      If you buy a gun I’ll tax your sheet
      If you buy some bullets I’ll tax your needs
      If you NRA, I’ll tax your teeth

      ’cause I’m the taxman, yaaaaaa, I’m the taxmannnnn.

      1. Connecticut is Dying Too

        Uh oh, the real wildbilljimmy has reemerged. Take your meds billy. You’re headed to that bad place again.

        1. Kim

          Wow – I didn’t realize the NRA had taxing authority. The extent that some will go to to advance an unreasonable agenda, is redefined every day

          1. Kim

            oops, I didn’t say that right. I wasn’t aware that there were suggestions out there to tax people for belonging to the NRA – but I wouldn’t be surprised.

            Would that make NRA members the ‘35%’ crowd?

  7. Dano860

    All this woman wants is her name stuck to some bill.
    She is the Representative from the area so it must be perceived that she has done something…will it resolve anything? I doubt it!
    The revenues (tax) will end up being sucked up by another do nothing bureaucratic agency.

  8. Pingback: Thursday’s Children and the Law News Roundup | Children and the Law Blog

  9. Michael E. Douroux

    President Obama and Fox News Join Forces to Protect Hollywood Violence

    Does anyone find it at all curious why political opposites like President Obama and Fox News are both hands-off on Hollywood violence?

    Is it coincidence, or does Hollywood’s unique cultural power and support for President Obama and Rupert Murdoch’s major Hollywood holdings have anything to do with it?

    President Obama is calling for some “common sense” on implementing more effective gun regulations to reduce violent crime, and he’s right.

    But on the social costs of graphic, gratuitous violence cultivated and marketed – particularly to our young – as an acceptable form of mainstream entertainment, forget about common sense, according to President Obama we need to do “research.”

    The “research” thing is a failing stall tactic that those with heavy vested interests in the hugely profitable business of violent entertainment are praying will keep the lid sealed on a Pandora’s box that once opened they will not be able to control.

    President Obama and Fox News united in protecting Hollywood violence. Is there a better example of all that is inherently wrong with our media-driven political system?

    Michael E. Douroux
    Corona del Mar, CA

    1. BearDogg-X

      Yet, the research has already been done and found no link between “violent” media and violent crime, and the FBI’s statistics show violent crime going down since 1991 as more “violent” entertainment is being made.

      It is rather laughable that you think there’s a c-o-n-spiracy between President Obama and Fox News to protect Hollywood when Fox News(along with the other tabloid trash mainstream news media) is among the first to try to blame “violent” entertainment for stuff like Sandy Hook.

      And in the end, it won’t matter. The US Supreme Court has already said that “violent” media is protected free speech under the First Amendment. The subject is effectively closed regardless of the idiot politicians who want to ignore the Supreme Court ruling.

  10. Sashlie

    If their going to start taxing games then they can forgot it. Games are already expensive as it is for 40 dollars and up.

    I will not be buying games taxed by politicians who are treating them like the bad side-effects of a cigarette. Not only is this bill a sweeping generalization of M-rated games, but taking advantage of a massacre event in America as an excuse to tax a product that harms no one and is not responsible for any activities in the real world. This is both pointless, counter-productive and does nothing.

    We already have services and organizations to donate available. Why doesn’t CT stop cutting back on mental-health and releasing criminals into society? Because last year they were just about to cut mental-health out the budget until this happened. Hartford I heard is one of the most violent cities in America on the list besides Chicago and the rest of them. There have been more shootings in that little city that it’s ridiculous. And the violence is just getting worse and worse.

    Now it has the hidden suburb kooks spoiled rotten by their folk and angry temper tantrums thrown in schools basically ignored. Between the Ghetto Trash scattered in Hartford and the spoiled suburban kid with everything there’s a lot of work CT needs to focus on.

    Games ain’t one of them.

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