Actually, by defintion, anyone who attaches behavioral characteristics to a group of people based on race (positive or negative) is being racist.
You know, almost all serial killers are white males. Really, that's the stat. Does that mean -- even being ACCURATE info -- that all white males are serial killers or that maybe we shouldn't be with them just in case? Nope. But you knew that. But maybe you should share that with Grandma.
I've been on the other side of the spectrum: growing up incredibly poor I had several partners in my life who were affluent and whose families had plenty of ideas about me that just weren't so. Couple that with having a single mother (oh my!), hippie parents (eek!) and being of immigrant stock (gasp!), and it happens. It's probably something everyone will unfortunately encounter on one side or another in their lives, sad as that is.
With *most* people, time can make a big difference. Hopefully, when explosed to your guy, your grandmother will see what she's doing and that she is seriously mistaken.
But, too, she may not. Racism is usually learned behaviour, and if you;ve been that way for all your life, it's really hard to deprogram oneself. Older people who were "born" into those attitudes generally don't grow out of them easily, if at all.
So, perhaps the right thing to say to Grandma is simply this: "I understand you feel that way, but I do not, and I feel it is best I learn for myself and judge people by their character, not their salaries or skin color."
Sometimes, a clear, fair and nonemotional statement like that is the best thing you can do.
Editor and Founder, Scarleteen
"If you're a bird, be an early early bird --
But if you're a worm, sleep late." - Shel Silverstein