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Legally Enforced Game Rating

I am not a huge fan of government censorship. Wait, sorry, I seem to have misspelled “I absolutely loath government censorship”. There is no reason for a group of people to dictate what the rest of us can and cannot see. Censorship doesn't just mean putting a black bar over something offensive, or bleeping out a bad word here and there. Whenever there is talk of forcing mature-rated television shows to only play after 10 or 11pm, I consider that a form of censorship. It's tampering with the flow of information in an attempt to protect the sensibilities of the young. 
Daddy, what's this 4Chan thing?
And it is so stupid.

I bring this all up because legislation is being considered that would force video games to all carry ratings. Now you're probably thinking “wait, don't all video games have those already?” Yes, but the ratings are not mandatory, much like the ratings on movies. 

I know what you're thinking now as well. “Well if they're doing it anyway, why does it matter if it's made mandatory?” As much as I may sound like a diehard republican for saying this, it's because this regulation will hurt small businesses and independent developers. It's one thing to expect EA or Bethesda to get their games rated or face a $5,000 fine, but to expect a few people working on laptops to jump through all those hoops just so that mom and dad can understand that “Blood-massacre 9000” MIGHT not be the best game for little Timmy is simply unreasonable, and in this case potentially deadly to the small developers. 
I know it SAYS extreme gore, but is right for my child?
Secondly, there is no point. Zero. I believe that what a child consumes from the media has one and only one effective regulator: the parents. If a parent is going to bring their kid to an R-rated movie, or buy them Grand Theft Auto: The one with more Prostitutes, then they will do it regardless of regulations. I ask you this, if all these games already have ratings on them, then why is this even a problem? I'll tell you why with a story from a recent trip to GameStop.
Mistake #1: Going to GameStop
8-year old (at most): This is the one I wanted mom.
Mom (too busy on cell phone to really pay attention): Okay, sure.
Guy at the counter: Ma'am, I have to inform you that this game contains a lot of realistic violence, and adult themes of a sexual nature.
Mom: (still too busy on cell phone) Yeah, okay, fine.
Will literally cut my child's soul out? Look, just buy the game so I can stop listening to him.
Mom up there is the problem. You can't really blame the kid, we all would have done this if we thought we could get away with it. M-rated games to kids these days are like R-rated movies to us; you were awesome if you managed to get into one. 

My point is this, what would mandatory ratings change? Mom here, or an imaginary dad in the same situation, is still too busy on her cell phone to pay attention to what she's using as this week's distraction to raise her kid for her, and until we can somehow regulate that, we're just wasting our time. 

What it will change is that it will strangle the independent game makers and bump up the prices on everything else.