Bob Jones Univ. apologizes for racist policies


Bob Jones Univ. apologizes for racist policies

Fundamentalist Christian college banned interracial dating until 2000

Slide show

Image: Dr. Martin Luther King

Martin Luther King Jr.
See the civil rights leader in speeches and marches from Alabama to Washington.


In the year of Barack Obama, there is much discussion of the state of race relations in America. But many other race-related topics are barely being discussed. Read NBC Senior Vice President Mark Whitaker’s essay on the subject and then tell us what’s going on in your town or community.

Video: Race & ethnicity  

More video

Holder likely choice for AG
Nov. 18: Reports say President-elect Barack Obama is likely to tap Washington, D.C. lawyer Eric Holder to be his attorney general. If confirmed, Holder will be the first African-American to hold that position. NBC’s Pete Williams reports.

GOP attempts broaden appeal

Tiger Woods: Obama ‘represents America’

Many still coming to terms with Obama’s victory

Maya Angelou: Obama’s election ‘is amazing’

The Big Picture

updated 1 hour, 34 minutes ago

COLUMBIA, South Carolina – A fundamentalist Christian University has apologized for racist policies including a one-time ban on interracial dating that wasn’t lifted until nine years ago and its unwillingness to admit black students until 1971.

Bob Jones University founded in 1927 in South Carolina said its rules on race were shaped by culture instead of the Bible, according to a statement posted Thursday on its Web site.

The university, with about 5,000 students, didn’t begin admitting black students until nearly 20 years after the U.S. Supreme Court’s 1954 Brown v. Board of Education ruling found public segregated schools were unconstitutional.

"We failed to accurately represent the Lord and to fulfill the commandment to love others as ourselves. For these failures we are profoundly sorry. Though no known antagonism toward minorities or expressions of racism on a personal level have ever been tolerated on our campus, we allowed institutional policies to remain in place that were racially hurtful," the statement said.

The interracial dating ban was lifted in March 2000, not long after the policy became an issue in the Republican presidential primary. Then-candidate George W. Bush was criticized when he spoke at the school during one of his first campaign stops.

Still receiving questions on race
Bob Jones University President Stephen Jones decided to issue the apology because the school still receives questions about its views on race.

The leader of the South Carolina National Association for the Advancement of Colored People said the civil rights group welcomed the statement.

"It’s unfortunate it took them this long — particularly a religious, faith-based institution — to realize that we all are human beings and the rights of all people should be respected and honored," said Lonnie Randolph, president of the association’s state chapter.

Randolph said that when Jones became president three years ago, he asked the civil rights leader not to hold the decisions made under his father and grandfather against him.

Jones is the great-grandson of the school founder, Bob Jones. He took over for his father, also named Bob Jones, in 2005.

 Copyright 2008 The Associated Press.

Bob Jones Univ. apologizes for racist policies – Race & ethnicity-

This entry was posted in Race Issues. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s