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by Abigail Van Buren

Mother of Elvis Impersonator Checks Into Heartbreak Hotel

DEAR ABBY: Will you please ask your readers to take a minute to think about how they treat people who are different or unique? These days we seem to care about how we treat people who are disabled or in a minority -- however, some of us seem to forget that ALL people should be treated with kindness, dignity and respect, regardless of who they are or what they do.

My son is an Elvis impersonator. Now, I'm not talking about some clairvoyant who thinks he channels Elvis; I'm talking about a talented singer who works hard at his profession of re-creating the Elvis concert experience. He was even selected to be in a new film on impersonators called "Almost Elvis." But you would not believe the way some people treat him in public.

Although he doesn't walk around in a jumpsuit, he must look the part with black hair and sideburns. It amazes and upsets me how rude and insensitive people can be with their smart remarks. If they stopped to think for a minute about the Golden Rule, about choosing to build up rather than tear down those around them, then we might have a little more kindness in the world. Elvis was known for his kindness to strangers -- and I think we could all take a lesson from him. -- PROTECTIVE LITTLE MAMA, OLYMPIA, WASH.

DEAR PROTECTIVE LITTLE MAMA: Although the comments may not be all that a mother would wish for, they may go with the territory. There's an old show-business saying, "If you want a place in the sun, you had better be prepared to put up with a few blisters." Since your son is respected in his profession, I'm hoping he receives his share of compliments to make up for any hurt that may be caused by the clumsy attempts at humor.

It's interesting that Elvis Presley's talent was so unique he is still an unforgettable celebrity so many years after his death.