I grew up in the UP of Michigan, lived in Iowa for a brief time, spent about twelve years in Southern California, more than twenty in the Rio Grande Valley of Texas, a couple of years in North Carolina, and about fifteen years or so in Maine, and I have to say that I haven't come across very many racist people. The very idea of racism doesn't make sense to me. Given that every race of people that I am aware of can show examples of good and bad, smart and stupid, ambitious and lazy, trustworthy and untrustworthy, I don't see how anyone can't realize that the traits we like or dislike about another person are based on something other than skin color or racial origins. I don't get it, and I can't say that I've come across it often, even in the Rio Grande Valley where I was among the minority. Attitudes there had more to do with language and common experiences than race, I think. I don't think it's unreasonable for people to give preference to those who grew up among them. Here in Maine, although we have very few minorities, those of us who weren't born and raised in Maine, and whose parents weren't from Maine, are "from away" and discriminated against on that basis to some extent. Being from away, that can be annoying but I get it. Having grown up in a town where I was related to everyone, I would have expected someone local to be given preference. But that's not racism. I did come across it in North Carolina. While I did not get the impression that I was hated by any of the black people who lived there, some of whom I am still friends with, I did come across some white people who were clearly racist, and that included the pastor of a church that we had attended for a couple of months who, for some reason, felt called upon to tell a racist joke from the pulpit. We didn't go back. Then, for a short time, we had a landlord who blatantly treated his black tenants a whole lot more rudely than he did us. These were people who probably didn't even consider themselves to be racist, since this was the culture they grew up in. I know that it exists, but I don't get it.