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When I lived in central NH there was someone who lived in the town who proudly drove a white sedan covered in racial epithets using magic marker and scratched into the paint. A hangman's noose was scratched into the trunk along with the phrase "linch all n* * * *rs".

Naturally that's just the most extreme example; far more commonplace was casual ignorant small-talk generalizing about "the blacks"/"the coloreds"/"the hispanics" in gas stations/convenience stores/the barber/etc. And the soft bigotry of low expectations absolutely permeated an area where people could and did go months, years without seeing a nonwhite individual in person.

I have often had the urge to hang numbers. They are problems looking for a place to happen. Letters, on the other hand, are always ready for a chat. ;-)

The asterisks got eaten in my post, fixed that. To be clear, there were no asterisks on the car. And it wasn't funny.

I'm sorry you understood me to be having fun with - when I was making fun of. When I was a kid (yes, I'm one of the old ones...) the abbreviation for number was "nr" - plural, "nrs" and lynch, if one intended to hang to death, was spelled with a "y".

You don't have to think I am funny any more than either one of us thought the idiot with the car was funny, but the purposeful, obvious misunderstanding of hate-speak accompanied by finger-pointing and laughter is a valid method of calling out idiots. And I think we can agree that the dude with the car was an idiot.

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