The California Legislature is considering a bill that would punish nonprofit youth organizations like the Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Cub Scouts, Little League, Special Olympics, American Youth Soccer Organization, Future Business Leaders of America, and many religious organizations that serve youth, because these organizations “discriminate on the basis of gender identity, race, sexual orientation, nationality, religion, or religious affiliations.”
Any organization that violates the bill forfeits its tax-exempt status under California law, forcing many organizations to choose between their mission and their finances. The bill is likely intended to punish the Boy Scouts for their policies regarding homosexuality, but the truth is any nonprofit youth organization that serves primarily one gender or another or divides its activities by gender (e.g. “girls’ soccer” or “boys’ tennis”) will be affected by this bill.
California may be a long ways from Arkansas, but in our modern era of policymaking and litigation, what is state law one day can become the law of the land the next.