There is Both Acceptance and Racism in New HampshireSince I've been in New Hampshire I've found the mostly white population to be friendly and accepting. I did my grocery shopping last week and while waiting at the deli to get some sandwich meats two men started chatting me up, which would have freaked me out a few months back, but I have come to see as normal but slightly amusing. I've never known people who are this friendly to strangers, and especially "different" looking strangers. I don't want to leave the impression that people in other states are uniformly hostile because they aren't, but this is different than someone seeing I am ordering a certain brand of meats or cheeses and saying, "I wanted to try that but wasn't sure if my family would like it." or something like that. One of the guys was telling me about his dog, the other was cracking jokes, like I'm an old friend of the family.
Unfortunately, everywhere you go in the US, there has to be racists to taint things and it's no different here. A couple weeks back several black students at St. Paul's School in Concord received threatening letters. The scariest part is that the letters appear to have been sent by someone with access to the school's records since they were addressed to the individual students in their names. The school, the Concord Police, and the FBI are investigating the incident and hopefully soon will find out who did it and arrest them. There is more information in the article at the Concord Monitor.
St. Paul's is at the western edge of Concord and to avoid traffic when I go to my doctor's office I take the highway and then cut through St. Paul's instead of driving through the downtown area of Concord. Traffic is just ridiculous here and certain times of the day (rush hour) it's just plain gridlock. So I know this campus, it's like a small college. The interesting thing to me is that even though St. Paul's is private, there are public schools like this in New Hampshire. We looked at a couple other towns before settling on the town we now live in, and Londonderry and Pembroke's public high schools are both academies and look like small college campuses. There are probably others I don't know about. I guess mostly I have to say that it really saddens me that some ignorant vicious fool is trying to ruin the camaraderie at St. Paul's. When you drive through you can see how diverse the school population is and see the groups of kids walking, talking, playing on the sports field and as friendly and accepting of each other as those two men at the deli counter were with me.