>I caught wind recently of a grass-roots alumni movement to appeal to Bob Jones University to apologize for past racist policies. You know BJU, right? My alma mater, my former employer of 15+ years, and that fundamentalist University that claimed its rule banning inter-racial dating was so important to its religious freedom that it appealed to keep its tax-exemption status all the way to the Supreme Court in the 1980s. They did drop the rule under pressure during Campaign 2000 with no admittance of wrongdoing. It was a distraction, Bob Jones III claimed on Larry King Live.
The whole thing has prompted me to research the rhetoric of atonement and the history of large institutions making amends for their past sins of racism. The Southern Baptists made a noble effort in 1995. Hey — George Wallace, who holds a 1964 honorary degree from my alma mater, even he apologized!!
The stock response that BJU gives when asked about making amends is that apologizing is a “liberal idea” with no Scriptural basis. It is? So I’m asking, oh Conservative Mafiosos, when did repentance become a left-leaning practice? Say it ain’t so! And what were all the sermons I heard all those years from the BJU chapel platform about turning from sin? Do para-church organizations get a free pass because Paul wasn’t explicit about their making amends?