There is a well-known thought experiment about bad equilibria that goes something like this:
A society has the following rules:
— Everyone must publicly electro-shock themselves 8 hours per day.
— If you see someone not shocking themselves then you must kill them
— Anyone who violates the second rule must also be killed. The same is true for all meta levels. Non-killers of non-killers of … of non-shockers must be killed.
This equilibrium can get locked in even if every single person dislikes it. I think similar but weaker dynamics apply all the time in normal life. Why is there so much hyperbolic hate directed against furries?
Most are people are very repressed. Society has a norm that you need to keep ‘low status’ or ‘cringey’ aspects of yourself private. Furries openly violate these norms. People feel the urge to punish them even if they are not directly disgusted. Being seen as tolerant toward furries puts them at risk. The furries are effectively forcing people to choose between self-preservation and punishing someone else. People hate being forced to make these choices.
I don’t claim this is the only dynamic at play. People also like to look down on official low-status groups to feel better about themselves. But it is an important dynamic.