I imagine that many small communities, particularly here in the Midwest, have elements that they would just as soon stayed off of the public radar. The presence of a bona fide hate group, for instance, probably does not help to draw in the types of individuals and families that most towns need in order to thrive economically, socially, and intellectually.
As an example, my own community has an active branch of a national organization called the League of the Confederacy, a group that expresses its pride in the Old South by displaying their Confederate flags and snorting aspersions on the President and his family with alarming frequency and ease. Most of the members of the League, I am sure, would deny being motivated by racism.
(The League of the South has been determined by the Southern Poverty Law Center to be a "hate group." I have a great deal of respect for the work and the judgment of the SPLC.)
Walmart has quit selling Confederate flags, so now two local "flag" stores have opened up, both proudly displaying the Stars and Bars as they attempt to build a clientele of discerning customers.
Yesterday during my trek across northern Arkansas, I just about drove off of the road as I was entering to community of Harrison. There, on the left-hand side of the road was a large billboard that I had never noticed before. It featured a pretty young (white) girl holding a puppy, and the caption read, "It's NOT Racist to (heart) Your People." Below that was "www.WhitePrideRadio.com", and below that was "Harrison - Love Lives Here."
A pretty young (white) girl, a puppy, and a statement that "love" lives in the community. Why, who wouldn't want to move into a swell place like that?
I looked the billboard up on the Internet and found that it has been there for over a year. It was apparently funded by the Ku Klux Klan. I didn't check out the Internet radio station, but the article regarding the billboard said that typing in the "White Pride" address gets a redirection to "www.kkkradio.com".
I guess if Walmart ever quits selling bed linens, there will be a sudden proliferation of "sheet shops" out here in my neck of the woods!