Racism, as it's generally understood, I find too limited. Limited because where I'm from, there's a lot of what I would label racism directed against Romani. However, if you accuse people of racism, on the basis of their opinions on a large and diverse group of people based sometimes on the actions of a few and sometimes on nothing at all, they protest. The most common excuse, in my experience ( and this isn't just something people say to defend themselves, but also when they're making racist remarks but want to make it seem like it isn't ), is to say that it's not because of their race, it's because of their culture. We don't, in other words, hate them for their skin color, we hate them for their ... culture.
There's a lot wrong with statements like that. To say that it's in Romani culture to be a lazy thief is no different than to say all African-Americans are criminals. Well, functionally there's no difference. I mean, there's a very simple thought experiment you can do, which is simply to say to yourself that African Americans are lazy thieves not because of their skin color, but because it's in their culture, and see if that doesn't seem like a racist statement to you.
Maybe what I'm saying is perfectly obvious to everyone, but my attempts to convince people who have these opinions of this have been unsuccesful. Mind you, I don't think these individuals are lying, or anything like that. I have no trouble at all believing that they don't view their own attitudes as being racist. Which in turn is basically the essence of this problem: Racism, according to the dictionary, is just the view that there exist different races, and that people have different traits that are inherent to them based on their race. In practical terms, though, that definition is ... close to useless.