SAN DIEGO – Five states ban Cosplay.
The increasingly popular hobby of Cosplay – short for ‘costume play’ and involving adults gathering to wear costumes inspired by their favorite films and TV shows – will be illegal in five states: Colorado, Ohio, Delaware, Kansas and New Mexico as of midnight tonight.
Motivations for the Cosplay Bans vary and include issues of public health and decency. New Mexico’s governor Susana Martinez said: ‘Grown adults dressing up as Captain Jack Sparrow and Padme from the Phantom Menace is f**king dumb’.
Cosplay enthusiasts responded with anger. Mark Jerkins of the Cosplay Association of America commented:
We are adults who enjoy dressing up in fancy dress-like costume, immersing ourselves in a fictional world, often with a kinky slant. And we demand respect. We should get it.
However, opponents of Cosplay are themselves organizing with membership of the anti-Cosplay pressure group Grow Up now reaching the 3 million mark. Spokesperson Martina Simons explains her opposition to Cosplay in this way:
I was into Cosplay at first, because it gave me a structure to my otherwise confused life. It was also a chance to escape the grim realities that pressure us all. But then a friend of mine introduced me to substance abuse and I’ve never looked back. Drug addiction isn’t the answer for everyone, of course. And it has its own problems – especially the health and economic drawbacks. However, to anyone kicking Cosplay I would argue at least drug abuse isn’t embarrassing.
With GU and the CAA both at loggerheads, a long and drawn out battle in the courts looks likely. This could go all the way up to the highest levels of government, with both groups boasting of powerful allies. Cosplay advocate Johnny Depp is expected to testify in front of a special Senate Committee, whilst Andy Garcia has allied himself with GU, stating in a special video message: ‘They’re all a bunch of babies and they need their asses kicking’.