Jack Thompson Disbarred

Who will defend us from the evil Makers of Games now?

Say what you like about the US legal system (as a Brit I feel unqualified to comment) but in Florida, at least, the judges still know common sense when it knocks on their doors. How do I know that? I know because Jack Thompson has been disbarred by the Florida bar and ordered to pay $43,675.35 in legal fees to the court.

Specifically “ John Bruce Thompson is permanently disbarred, effective thirty days from the date of this order so that respondent can close out his practice and protect the interests of existing clients. If respondent notifies the Court in writing that he is no longer practicing and does not need the thirty days to protect existing clients, this Court will enter an order making the permanent disbarment effective immediately. Respondent shall accept no new business from the date this order is filed.”

If you’re in to your games you’ve probably heard of Jack Thompson. Over the last few years JT (as we in the gaming press have taken to calling him) has made it his personal agenda to associate ‘violent’ computer games, such as Rockstar’s Grand Theft Auto series, with real-world (and genuinely atrocious) violent acts – including the Virginia Tech shootings. You might also remember JT’s (s)successful(/s) entirely failed campaign to have Bully (another Rockstar game) banned from release.

Sadly ‘The Jack Thompson Debacle’ (which would make a fine Famous Five or Secret Seven tale if you ask me) isn’t over yet because JT still has the chance for a retrial although the application must be submitted by another member of the Florida Bar, in good standing. Arguably the very act of Backing up Thompson should take any lawyer out of good standing with the Bar, so it seems unlikely such an occurrence will… well, occur.

Alabama first (for being “ unable to conduct himself in a manner befitting practice in this state”) and now Florida, how many other Bars can Jack Thompson be disbarred from I wonder?

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