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Bob Jones 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.

The fundamentalist Christian university, founded in 1927, said its rules on race were shaped by culture instead of the Bible, according to a statement posted on its Web site.

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

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

“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 South Carolina NAACP.

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