UPDATE (Monday, 11/12/12): ABC 4 News has learned that the sample of racist material cited in this study was less than 400 racist tweets. Utah's position in the study was due to one single tweet, representing a high a per capita ranking.
SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 News) - The re-election of Pres. Barack Obama Tuesday came with racist tweets. Some called the president a "monkey" and many more use the “n-word.”
The disturbing language prompted a group of geography experts at Floatingsheep.org to try to break down whether the tweets came from certain parts of the country over others.
The 365 racist tweets examined by Matthew Zook from the University of Kentucky came mostly from the southeast with Mississippi and Alabama having the highest. But not far behind is Utah which produced the fifth highest per capita* amount of racist posts on Twitter, according to the study.
Several Utahns tell ABC4 they are shocked to see the racism coming from their state.
“Recently we moved here and we find the people very welcoming, not racists at all by any means,” said Holly Stegman.
Vicelci Rechsteiner agrees. “I don’t expect that from well-educated people in Utah,” she said. “I think they are more open minded and even if when they are not they are more respectful and keep it to themselves”
But one woman tells ABC4 she's not surprised. She said she sees the racism with her own eyes.
“I see it everyday when I walk with my son who is half black,” said Kristy Underwood. “It's not in your face racism like down south and east coast but it's definitely there.”
The northeast had the lowest amount of racist tweets. The geography experts found some states including Montana, Idaho, Wyoming and South Dakota had no hate tweets, but the researchers think that's because the use of Twitter is lower in those states.
*see update above