Man I feel I can provide you with some insight on your questions but it may leave you even more confused because there is some good and some bad. I have lived in Arkansas my whole life and am preparing to go to law school somewhere north of here, I am so ready to get out of the South. Also, I am a white man married to a black woman. Here goes, let's piss off some Alabamans.
Yes. Racism and racial tension are still a BIG problem in the South. It may not be as out in the open as in the 60's, but it's still there. Being in an interracial marriage, I can assure you we experience this all to often. From my experience, it gets worse the father south you go so Alabama and Mississippi are the worst. It tends to be a little better in college towns like Tuscaloosa, but still not great. That's not to say that everyone here is a racist, in fact the vast majority are not, but the percentage that are is much larger than in other areas of the country and it is still evident at times.
University of Alabama law has a great rep in the region (Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Tennessee, Georgia) but your best bet for good jobs are probably Memphis, Little Rock, New Orleans, Jackson, places like that. Atlanta is an option but far from a given.) Outside of those states, Alabama law is fairly irrelevant.
Yes. It really is beautiful for all it's faults and the food in the South is fantastic.
You didn't ask this but I'll mention it anyways since going there may relegate you to working in the region. You said your married. I don't know what your plan is with kids, but it would probably not be ideal place to raise them. Alabama, Miss, and Arkansas are consistently dead last on things like education, drug usage, obesity, and many others. We joke in Arkansas that if it weren't for Alabama and Mississippi we would be last in everything.
Hope this helps and good luck to you. One positive is that UofA is among the easiest T25 to get into with large money because so many have concerns like yours. PM me if there is anything else I can maybe help you with. GL!