When my wife and I moved cross-country after college, a friend of South Asian descent helped us out by driving with us. We had dinner one night at a Waffle House in Chattanooga, and Dusty the waitress was clearly pretty bothered to have a brown man in her restaurant. For some reason what felt right was to give her a big tip to show how little we cared about what she thought. As we walked out we saw her jaw drop.
But I wouldn't do that with something as big as a car.
(A big tip at Waffle House in Chattanooga is $5.)
As someone of South Asian descent, I would have been quite happy to walk out of there. I keep hearing that the South is not as bad of bigoted northerners make it out to be, but I have never had anyone get bothered by me in the north. I have had issues in Arkansas, TN, and NC.
Also South Asian.
I mostly grew up in the "South" - metro Atlanta. I also spent some time in and near Savannah.
I'd say the most racist place I've been in America is probably the midwest. I couldn't walk down the street without getting stared down.
As a middle-class-hetero-white-dude race intolerance seems to be more correlated to community size and local diversity than north/south/midwest/etc. my 0.02$
I agree. I don't think the midwest is racist because of it's location in America. I think it's more racist because there is very little diversity.
When I lived in the midwest it was very very obvious that the town was segregated. The black people lived in one shitty part and the latinos lived in the other shitty part. The white people all lived in "suburban" part of the town in the nice houses. And the white people that actually lived intown were consider trashy and local lingo was to call them "river rats".
I was in the midwest due to an IT company setting up shop there in a town of about 60,000. The company created a need for employees with skills so a bunch of us folks of of color were imported from around America to setup shop.
The influx of Indians, Africans, traditional looking Muslims, etc definitely upset the local people.
A Lebanese co-worker got assaulted in the street by a man with a gun who kept throwing "wet back" type comments at him and waving his gun telling him to go back home type of crap. Cop came. No recourse, didn't even give a fuck about the guy with the gun.
I was "stopped" by the police (an off duty cop in his personal vehicle) for walking through an EMPTY parking lot at night. Literally walking from the office to my apartment in an area that's commonly walked through by people.
Local shop owners were happy to refer to the blacks as ni**ers, which was shocking since I'm not even white.
A local "friend" I made would often complain to me that his parents can't sell their house that was listed due to the fact that neighborhood had gone to shit now that there was so much black pepper living there.
I don't think it was the physical location again, I believe the reason everyone was hostile was that the town is 99% white according to the US Census report. I don't think the people knew how to react to color. To have so many educated colored people in their town must have really thrown them off.
I met a black man that is married to a white lady (town native) and they did quite well with real estate. He was able to purchase one of the rich people houses and gave me a private tour. He showed me how the house had slave staircases and he took a lot of pride in the fact that he was the first non-white person to own the house. All previous owners of the house had been white doctors.
Anyways, I'm kind of rambling but just sharing my side of the story.