Why there's so much drama around fursuits
Why is there so much drama surrounding fursuits and fursuiters? I've seen several people post comments like, "they're just animal costumes." And I can't agree more. However, to others they represent more. Sometimes MUCH more.
For a select few it's their job. However since for the heavy hitters of fursuit studios, there really is no concern over a lack or demand. For some of the smaller studios though, this may be a concern. Albeit a good reason, this probably makes up less then 1% of the drama so it is almost void.
To fully answer this question, one must deviate into what exactly a "typical furry" is. Furry is a nerdish / science fiction based fandom. It is full of socially awkward, possibly unaccepted in society people, mainly males. Another section that must be noted is the "weird, misunderstood artist." Obviously this doesnt lump EVERYONE into one category, but I believe for this purpose can be used as a generalization.
Point being is most furries have some sort of self image deficiency. Everyone has a level self consciousness, but being a nerdy/ fantasy based fandom, I believe the percentage is most likely higher then normal everyday life. So what does all this have to do with fursuit drama? Well, most furries that create a fursona or character put alot of themselves into it. Most are based somewhat directly off the person that created it. It's no secret than in a drawing or in a fursuit, you become your character, whatever it is that you created. You're not you, but rather something different, something new, something... better. For myself, Im a fairly reserved personality, but when I get into a bright blue dog costume, I enjoy playing a character that is much more "friendly" and outgoing. I do things I would never consider doing out of suit.
When you mix people with some sort of chip on their shoulder, with something they put a lot of themselves into to create something more desirable to be, it's really a recipe for disaster. Like most fantasy based subcultures, people get sucked into them or their new persona very easily. Haven't any of you watched a friend get caught up into WOW, or RP'ing, or LARPING, or even just into furry?
When you input this much passion into something that represents yourself, people are more likely to defend it. Its an extension of themselves. It's their "place." It's their "home." For many of us, it's more then just an "animal costume." Some people spend 10's of thousands of dollars commissioning art and costumes, that's how important it is to them. For that scene on paper, or that 80 minutes in character in suit, they truly are exactly what they want to be. It can be very empowering.
However, at the end of the day, it is just an animal costume. They are just drawings. They are just cartoon characters you created. Maybe it is your escape. Maybe you feel like you belong here. But when it all comes down to it, furry in it's simplest form is a hobby. A childish one too. While it may represent something more, or a chance to escape, or a way to fix a problem in your daily life, it's still cartoons and animal costumes.