Tobit's Dog articulates well how deeply reactionary and ignorant the Klan and white supremacy in the South was. It's a point that has been made thousands of times but can't be made enough - since the elements that caused it aren't completely gone no matter how far we have come. If you were not a WASP, you were dead meat in the Deep South:
Worst of all in the Klan’s eyes, unlike Harper Bay, where there were
separate churches, the white and colored Catholics actually went to the
same services here in Chatqua County. Years later he heard that one of
the Klansmen had pointed out that some of the coloreds from north of
Harper Bay had been coming into the county to attend those services.
Next thing you know, he had asserted, there’ll be Jews building one of
their Christless temples. It did not matter that there were fewer than
thirty Catholics in the county, and only six of them were colored; the
Klan hated Catholics near about as much as Jews and Negroes.
It made Tobit chuckle morbidly to think about where that would
place a colored Catholic in Klan estimation.
It's very easy to forget that Catholics were once seen racially. For the race obsessed WASPs of the south, Catholics were, for the most part, minorities from Europe. The Klan in the south did not want outsiders disrupting what was a very shaky social foundation, which had been made more vulnerable by the abolition of slavery. Any outside intrusion - Catholic, Jewish or God forbid another minority - had the potential to take apart what little authority Southern whites felt they had. It's all pretty pathetic and it's amazing that such pathetic people were still able to terrorize Southern blacks.
With all the suffering in the world, it can seem as if the story of southern blacks during Jim Crow is old and tired but their endurance gives us lessons for our own endurance even in the darkest alleyways of life. Ignatius Press has been releasing quite a few stellar literary releases and this one is certainly recommended.