I have wondered how it happens that USA has two big national figure skating clubs - USFSA (US Figure Skating Association - re-abbreviated USFS in 2007), and ISI (Ice Skating Institute).
Someone told me an explanation that sounds a little crazy. The story is that USFSA was once run like some country clubs - that they tried to only let in WASPS, and kept out minority ethnic and religious groups, or judged them poorly. That ISI, and many of its member rinks, were formed in reaction to that, to be more inclusive. But that somewhere around the 1970s and 1980s, the USFSA gradually became more inclusive, letting in anyone who could pay, and that USFS judging gradually became less prejudicial, so non-WASPS like Sasha Cohen could join and do well. But that there remained bad feelings between the people who ran the clubs for quite some time, which delayed their coming to friendly agreements. By the time USFSA and ISI came to agreement, so this person said, the prejudicial era had essentially ended, and there has therefore been increasingly little need for two national clubs to exist. So the ISI, which is at a disadvantage because it can't give access to ISU competitions, is dying off.
(The USFSA has also finally started pushing its Learn To Skate program enough to compete better with the corresponding ISI program, but that is a separate issue.)
Is there solid evidence for such a story? Without convincing evidence, I'm reluctant to believe it. AFAICT, the USFSA exists for the purpose of helping US figure skaters win ISU competitions, so such prejudice would have been contra-productive, because it would have reduced the U.S. competitive pool.