Instapundit has a multi-updated post on Geraldine Ferraro's comments on Obama's support deriving from his race. Great discussion, many links. Amidst the many learned comments, I offer here the necessary perspective of the Assistant Village Idiot, noticing the obvious first.
It is ludicrous to suggest that Obama's support does not derive from his race. I readily concede that his qualifications can and do exist irrespective of race, and also that he is a different style than Sharpton and Jackson (Starbucks vs. BK, perhaps). But references to his race permeate the comments of his supporters - what else can they possibly mean when they say he can bring us together, that he transcends race, that it would be good for America if we could do this, that it would be a message about America to other countries, etc?
Whether Obama is seeking this type of support is a separate issue (I believe he is - I mean, Chicago...Democrat... - but even if he isn't the point remains). He is attracting much support from people who talk like this, for whom the issue of his mixed race is an overwhelming symbol which puts other considerations in the background. All the shoulds, and what-ifs, and buts don't obscure that fact. He may or may not be qualified - but that question is clearly unimportant to many of his voters - and caucusers.
(Spelling corrected. Thanks, Glenn).