An assemblyman in California has introduced two bills, one of which would ban travel to 21 states that have Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) laws.
Democratic Assemblyman Evan Low introduced Assembly Bill 1887 that "would prohibit state-funded or state-sponsored travel to any state with a law in effect that sanctions or requires discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression, subject to specified exceptions."
If approved, the travel ban will cover all agencies, departments, boards, authorities, commissions, the University of California, the Board of Regents, of the University of California and the California State University, which will "review all requests for state-funded or state-sponsored travel to any state with a law in effect that sanctions or requires discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression."
In addition, Low also introduced Bill 1888 that would require all institutions receiving Cal Grant aid "to certify to the commission in the institution's participation agreement for the Cal Grant program that the institution shall not subject a student or employee of the institution to discrimination on the basis of, among other things, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression, and that the institution shall not apply for, or receive, a waiver by the United States Department of Education from nondiscrimination requirements for the receipt of federal funds."
The travel ban bill will affect the performance of the University of California teams including the football teams of UCLA and USC as they will be prohibited from traveling to Illinois, Florida, Pennsylvania, Arizona, Texas, Virginia and the rest of the 21 states that have religious liberty laws, WND reported.
As such, the teams will have to forfeit their games.
"We're addressing this issue right now, because we're getting calls right now from different entities that travel outside the state," said Melissa Apuya, a legislative aide for Low.
"These bills send a clear message that the state of California does not tolerate discrimination in any form," said Rick Zbur, executive director of Equality California, an LGBT advocacy group.
However, critics said the bills are themselves discriminatory.
Brad Dacus, president of the Pacific Justice Institute (PJI), said they oppose the travel ban bill.
"AB 1887 is hypocritical, elitist and out of step with our First Freedom, religious liberty. While we all would like to see less wasteful travel at taxpayer expense—particularly by members of the Legislature—this is not the way to do it," he said.
Christian author, radio host and Baptist minister Carl Gallups said this is part of the "gay agenda."
"While touting equality for the LGBT community, apparently they are more than willing to trample upon and completely redefine the First Amendment liberties of other groups," he said.
He added, "I really do not think that Mr. Evan Low thought this matter through before submitting this knee-jerk legislation. It is certainly bound to be fraught with all sorts of legal 'loop-holes' and workarounds. I can't imagine California attempting to conduct its normal affairs of state in cooperation with the rest of the nation, while being hamstrung with such an absurd piece of legislation."