California bill would fine department stores $1,000 for separating toys by gender
By Divina Ramirez // Mar 16, 2021

Democrat lawmakers in California are considering a bill (AB 2826) that would penalize department stores and large retailers that separate their children's merchandise, including toys and clothing, by gender.


The bill, which was introduced by Cupertino Assemblymember Evan Low, would only apply to stores with 500 or more employees beginning 2023. Under the bill, stores would have to keep children's merchandise in an undivided, gender-neutral area.

If passed, stores caught not following the provision would have to pay a $1,000 fine if they do not correct their violation within 30 days of receiving written notice of said violation.

The bill states that "unjustified differences" have prompted stores and retailers to market similar products like toys and clothing to either boys or girls. Low hopes to highlight the similarities between products made for either gender with his bill, as well as make it easier for parents as consumers to compare similar products.

Bid to make shopping more inclusive

Low said he wants to make the shopping experience inclusive for all children. He said he got the idea from one of his staffers, whose daughter supposedly questioned why certain items that she wanted were in an area designated for boys' items.

"This is an issue of children being able to express themselves without bias," Low said. He added that the policy behind the bill is important when it comes to addressing "perceived societal norms" and ensuring that "prejudice and judgment" do not play a prominent role in children's lives.

The introduction of the bill comes amid a backlash from "consumer advocates" and "gender activists" claiming that separating children's merchandise based on gender perpetuates gender roles and stereotypes.

Moreover, activists argue that gendered toys and items can make children feel ashamed if they do not conform to those roles and stereotypes. In the United Kingdom, the campaign "Let Toys Be Toys" has successfully pressured several major retailers to drop the labels "girls" and "boys" in their stores and websites.

In the United States, retail giant Target was the first to give in to the demands of activists, announcing that the company would stop "gender-based labeling" of toys in 2015.

And it appears that the introduction of AB 2826 only marks the beginning of lawmakers pushing for more bills that seek to address so-called gender issues. (Related: California forces insurance companies to pay for sex organ mutilation in gender-confused teens.)

For instance, lawmakers in California are also considering another bill that would make it illegal for stores and retailers to charge extra for items marketed solely to girls and women. Critics call that extra money "pink tax."

Satire turned real

Last February, satire website The Babylon Bee released an article about a new California bill that seeks to stop department stores from selling toys that do not "actively set out to confuse children on their sexuality and gender." The article poked fun at gender activists' push to politicize merchandise made for children.

According to the article, the bill will prohibit anti-science "boy aisles" and "girl aisles," allowing shoppers to go through the entire store before finding the perfect gender-nonconforming toy for their child. "The goal is to take perfectly happy, healthy children and cause them to wonder if their sex is really right for them."

Local store owners who are enthusiastic about the change also argue that companies would have to create toys that "make kids unsure of their identity" if they hope to sell products there.

Commenting on the news about Low's bill, The Babylon Bee editor Joel Berry said in a tweet: "WELP … another @TheBabylonBee prophecy fulfilled."

Go to to learn more about Democrats' confusing gender ideologies.

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