When GOP presidential candidates Ted Cruz and Ben Carson visited Bob Jones University last week in separate events, it signaled to many in the political community that the evangelical institution in Greenville once again was ready for the national political limelight.The fundamentalist Christian school had once been an obligatory stop for GOP conservatives running for president, attracting the likes of Ronald Reagan in 1980 to George W. But BJU’s policies banning interracial dating, which ended after Bush’s visit, and its branding of Catholicism by a former BJU president as a “satanic counterfeit,” along with a political disinterest by a later BJU president, made the campus less a routine campaign destination – until this year. “We realize this is an important event in the history of our country and we want to do our part in giving our students the opportunity to be educated and make right choices.” Former Gov.
The leader of the South Carolina National Association for the Advancement of Colored People said the civil rights group welcomed the statement.Bob Jones University lost its tax exemption after a 13-year battle with the IRS over whether the university’s policies against interracial dating precluded it as a non-taxable religious educational institution.The university didn’t admit any black students until 1971, 17 years after Brown vs. It then wouldn’t admit any students who were in a mixed-race marriage and created rules to prohibit students from interracial dating.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. Board of Education ruling found public segregated schools were unconstitutional.