California students and athletes to skip trips due to LGBT law

February 21, 2017

As a result of a new California law, numerous university students may miss an upcoming research conference in Tennessee and talks about a UC Berkeley-University of Kansas men’s basketball series have been called off. [LA Times]

The law imposes a ban on state-funded travel to states that discriminate against the LGBT community. California’s attorney general has listed Tennessee, Kansas, North Carolina and Mississippi as states that discriminate against LGBT individuals.

Kansas ended up on the travel ban list because the state adopted a law last year that allows campus religious groups to exclude LGBT students and faculty from membership. The California attorney general placed Tennessee on the travel ban list because of a 2016 law that allows therapists and counselors with sincerely held principles to reject LGBT clients.

In April, the University of Memphis will host the Council on Undergraduate Research conference, an event that will showcase the work of more than 3,000 undergraduates. At least 18 students at UC Davis, UC Santa Barbara and Cal State Long Beach planned to attend the conference with their universities funding the trip. Conference organizers selected more than 100 California students to participate in the event, though it is unclear how many of those individuals attend public universities.

Some students do not mind that they will lose out on an opportunity to present their research at a prestigious conference.

“I don’t want any funding on my behalf from the state, my parents or grandparents to go to a state like Tennessee that discriminates against LGBT people,” UC Davis senior Acacia Keith said.

Keith was invited to present her research on the anti-abortion movement at the upcoming conference in Memphis.

Other students, though, take issue with the new California law.

“The law is a juvenile but well-intended reaction to a real problem,” UC Davis senior Mark Rivera said. “Instead of discouraging travel to supposedly backward places, we should encourage travel; otherwise, campuses will become more insular and make the problem worse.”

Davis, who is majoring in religious studies and cognitive science, said he still wants to attend the conference if he can obtain funding. Some state universities are considering fundraising options that would allow students invited to the conference to attend.

California’s travel ban allows exceptions in cases that visits are required by grants, litigation or contracts signed before Jan. 1.

The UCLA football team has a previously scheduled game that will take place in Memphis this fall. However, the UCLA football program says it will not schedule further visits to any banned states, and it is “fully committed to promoting and protecting equity, diversity and inclusion.”

Long Beach State’s baseball team will travel to North Carolina for a three-game series that was scheduled in a contract signed before Jan. 1.

As with UCLA, a spokeswoman for Long Beach State said the university would comply with the law. However, spokeswoman Terri Carbaugh said the law could prove challenging to keep up with. Carbaugh said activities like academic conferences are sometimes planned more than a year in advance, and a new state could join the blacklist after travel arrangements have been made.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

I agree with the senior Mark Rivera, if you believe in this sort of thing then express it wherever and whenever possible. This type of “ban” is the lefts intolerance showing it’s ass!

In an age where “equality” is the norm (in thought as the practice hasn’t quite caught up) unisex bathrooms should be the norm at the university level, right? Those adults should be informed and mature enough to act accordingly, right? Besides wouldn’t it be more cost effective to have one bathroom rather than two? One big one with a sufficient number of stalls and urinals to accommodate anyone’s preference.

In our K-12 schools? That’s a dicey one to say the least… I can just imagine some 7th grader coming home from school and asking his Mom or Dad why there was a girl standing in front of a urinal… I don’t think that’s anywhere in the book of standard parenting.

To hinder….hamper, obstruct, impede, inhibit, retard, balk, prevent, thwart, foil, curb, delay, arrest, interfere with, set back, slow down, hobble, hold back, hold up, stop, halt

If you want a well rounded education that gives you the power to think for yourself you are in the wrong state.

Great! Stay home, save the tax money and Californicate.

Old principal. Damn if you do and damn if you don’t. Just keep raising fees and taxes so that we can spend more money fighting and discussing it. Now which bathroom should I or can I use?

Maybe those other states should ban travel to sanctuary states like California that openly disobey the laws of the U.S. Give these stupid politicians a taste of their own medicine.

I take it you are referring to the California law allowing use of marijuana which disobeys the laws of the U.S.?

Do these states actually discriminate or do they simply fail to glorify?

Here we go again…STUPID California cut off your nose to spite your face! Why penalize students just because of these states policies when in California WE have OUR policies and laws. Like the one student said maybe by GOING into the states and educating them on other issues you’ll be expanding they’re world and vision/ideas. DUMB DUMB DUMB! But then again look who’s running California – whiney little – “gonna take my toys from the sand box” idiots anyway.

Mostly agree with this. God-forbid that people who think differently should be able to have an actual conversation.

Only disagree in that ‘educating them’ goes both ways, not just the CA student preaching to the ‘hicks’ or whatever the pejorative of the day is.

So CA students and faculty are against freedom of association laws? I don’t think the CA personnel have thought this one out but then again, that shouldn’t surprise me either.