You see them on CNN focus groups every election year, ordinary-looking Americans of average intelligence who have made only one decision in their lives -- the decision to be indecisive. These so-called "undecided voters" enjoy an exalted status among the American electorate simply because they cannot, after months of relentless media saturation detailing each candidate's stand on every imaginable issue, make up their minds as to who will get their esteemed and much sought-after vote come Election Day. Blustery pundits strain to find meaning in their vapid opinions; the media gaze upon them as if they were sacred Greek oracles; and their votes are coveted by the candidates, who apparently believe that these dithering ciphers will ultimately decide the election.
If these bumbling, exasperating, brain dead, attention-seeking dimwits hold the fate of the nation in their hands, God help us.
The good news is, if they are truly that indecisive, they probably won't vote at all because they won't be able to decide what to wear to the polls. Should he wear his jeans or his khaki trousers? Will the white button down shirt make the correct impression or will the Polo knock-off be better? Loafers or sneakers? Should she bring lunch in case she has to stand in line at the polls? A fresh tuna sandwich or that leftover turkey wrap from the restaurant she went to last night after spending two hours deciding where to eat, then another half hour staring vacantly at the menu, trying to choose what to order, followed by another hour attempting to decide how much of a tip to leave.
Assembling these people in a focus room must be an excruciatingly tedious chore in itself. Should I sit in the front row or the middle row? Hmm. Maybe I'll compromise and sit in the middle row. Hmm. But what if a tall person sits in front of me and I won't be able to see? Hmm. Should I keep my sweater on? Why did I wear this sweater anyway? I should have taken the blue one. Next time, I should spend more time choosing my wardrobe. Like maybe eight hours. Why did I even decide to buy this sweater in the first place?
So the focus group moderator asks a question. "We've heard the debates now. Both candidates have starkly different views on the issues. Have you decided who to vote for? Candidate A, who believes we should bring back slavery, or Candidate B who is against slavery? Candidate A, who murdered six people at a shopping mall and spent ten years in lockup-up, or Candidate B who has no arrest record and believes in gun control?"
The Undecideds frown. They appear to be thinking. A long silence ensues. You can hear the wheels not turning. Granted, that's a tough choice. One of them finally raises his hand and, with the stentorian gravitas of Zeus-like deity, proclaims that each candidate made some interesting points, but he still doesn't know who to vote for. The rest of them hesitate, then decide to all nod in what appears to be agreement, but still none of them can decide whether or not to raise a hand.
Finally, finally another hand shoots up. The moderator, foaming at the mouth with unabashed exhilaration at the prospect, albeit remote, of an intelligent opinion, excitedly asks if the hand raiser has made a decision. All eyes are on this person as he says, "Will there be snacks after this?"
Exasperated, the focus group moderator dismisses them. Election Day approaches and CNN invites them back a few times, primarily to fill air time while Wolf Blitzer stares at his reflection in a men's room mirror to see if there's anything he can do to make himself look like The Most Interesting Man in the World.
Are the Undecideds really unable to make choices in their everyday lives? Do they really dither over minor daily decisions? Probably not. They have these sudden attacks of indecisiveness only during election years because they thrive on all the attention, fifteen minutes of fame because you can't make up your mind. What a scam! Only in America. And if they ever did make a decision, no one would care about them or their non-opinions anymore and they would fade back into obscurity, which is where they belong.
An hour after the polls close, a Gallup Poll comes out and is widely reported by the media. The headline reads: "Undecideds Still Undecided."