Interesting anecdote: I have a fairly large circle of friends and four children. Two of my children are in college. While both voted for John McCain they were they only two people I know on either side who was convinced that Barack Obama would not, could not win the election. And they were shocked when he did.
Both have dated outside their race and I have no reason to believe they harbor any racist feelings.
Then it hit me: after four years of high school and time spent in college, they are convinced the country is much more racist than it is. And they are convinced because that is what they have been taught. They have had no personal experiences which would lead them to that conclusion.
Since my epiphany I have made a point to grill many college students of my acquaintance, and whether they voted for Obama or not, they still can’t believe that so many white people would vote for him.
My son went from saying “Did you know [my friend] is black?” (a classmate in grade school whose race he didn’t notice for 3 years) to “There is NO WAY people in Virginia or West Virginia will vote for a black guy.”
Progress? I don’t think so.