To: U.S. Department of political correctness

Dear Sirs and Ma'ams:

I am hoping you can give me some advice for the upcoming presidential election. I want to vote for the "right" candidate — the man, woman or child who will best lead this country — but, more importantly, I want to be sure I cast a politically correct vote, because, believe me, I am all about P.C.

Instead of "mankind," I like to say "humankind," and I insist on calling old people "chronologically challenged." The Washington Redskins are the Washington Native Americans in my book, and I was all for a good ERA until I found out it wasn't a baseball statistic. I put up a "holiday tree" in my living room each December.

As per women, I respect them a great deal. My wife is a woman. So is my mother. The two scariest people in the universe are Judge Judy and that British chick who used to host "Weakest Link." I'm not a fan of Maria Sharapova because she happens to be a babe (I mean non-mirror challenged), or a 6-foot-2 goddess — I just like the way she, uh, plays basketball. And I love all those TV shows in which 100-pound women routinely pound men into the sidewalk. You go, girl (I mean, woman, whatever)!

But being politically correct for the upcoming election is a tall (short-challenged) order. Last week the National Organization for Women blasted Sen. Ted Kennedy because he announced his support for Barack Obama rather than Hillary Clinton. They called this an "abandonment" of women and the "ultimate betrayal" and "the greatest betrayal" and a lot of other nasty things.

Angry might be an understatement if you're describing this rant, which runs longer than the State of the Union address and sounds like a declaration of war. Who wrote this thing, Martha Burk?

"Women have just experienced the ultimate betrayal," the statement reads. "Senator Kennedy's endorsement of Hillary Clinton's opponent in the Democratic presidential primary campaign has really hit women hard. ... He's picked the new guy over us. ... He's joined the list of progressive white men who can't or won't handle the prospect of a woman president who is Hillary Clinton (they will, of course, say they support a woman president, just not 'this one.')"

(As we all know, the Kennedys have always been great advocates for women's rights, so we can certainly understand why NOW cherishes the senator's support.)

What I want to know is this: If I vote for Hillary, is this the ultimate betrayal and abandonment of blacks? After all, Obama is half black, which is close enough if you're looking for a black candidate — think of it as a biological, political compromise — to get behind. What would the NAACP say to Kennedy if he threw his support behind Hillary? How many nanoseconds would it take until Jesse Jackson showed up on his doorstep?

It's confusing, very confusing.

If I vote for Obama or Hillary, I am abandoning Mormons and evangelicals — think Mitt Romney and Mike Huckabee.

But if I vote for Mitt or Huck, I am abandoning the elderly. John McCain is pushing 72 years old. He's got warts that are older than Obama. I certainly don't want to betray People with White Hair.

Furthermore, if I vote for someone other than McCain, could this be construed as an abandonment of our military veterans and former prisoners of war?

Decisions, decisions. I want to cast a politically correct vote, regardless of silly things such as how candidates stand on certain issues or their ability to get the job done, but politically correct for whom?

The only real politically correct candidate out there is Gladys Knight — black, female, Mormon and pushing the age thing (64). The Knight-Pip ticket is the way to go, but as far as I know she hasn't declared her candidacy yet.

NOW's anti-Kennedy rant might strike you as ironic — telling people they should vote for Hillary because she is a woman is pretty much the same thing as voting for Barack because he is a man. It also might strike you as strange that an organization that doesn't want women to be judged for their gender wants you to vote for Hillary because of her gender.

But that's just because you're an un-politically correct rube.

Doug Robinson's column runs on Tuesdays. Please e-mail [email protected]