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Anti-Censorhip Advocacy Group Calls Out Massachusetts DOT

Kid Playing Arcade Game

The National Coalition Against Censorship has written to the Massachusetts Department of Transportation decrying the office for removing select video games from the state’s rest stops.
NCAC director Joan E. Bertin provided Polygon with a copy of the letter written for the secretary and chief executive officer of the MDOT. In the letter, Bertin plainly laid out the NCAC’s concerns with the removal of the (supposedly), questionable video games.

“There is no legitimate state interest that could be asserted to justify removing specific games to appease the sensibilities of certain motorists,” Bertin stated. “Moreover, by caving to the demands of one passer-by, the Department will inevitably invite others to register complaints about material they deem inappropriate. It is not a stretch to imagine someone demanding a ban on certain DVDs, magazines, or books. Perhaps other travelers will think it is inappropriate to broadcast news about war or crime, or other televised content. It is no more acceptable for the Department to remove certain kinds of video games than it would be to selectively remove other materials in rest stops and concessions because some motorists find something in them objectionable.”

Bertin added that even though video games may not be for everyone, they are protected under the First Amendment of the Constitution, and therefore, “cannot be regulated or restricted by the state.”

What do you think of the NCAC’s point? Should the games be allowed to stay, or does the Massachusetts state government have the right to run its rest stops the way it wants?

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