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Undecided; I’m Not Buying It

Posted by on Sep 28, 2012

This is a minor rant. I’m about to get political, without getting political. This isn’t one of those posts where I declare my intentions as to which presidential candidate I’m going to be voting for. Instead, this is a post that is addressed to that phantom group that is known as the “undecided”.

Have you?
Oliver Hammond via Compfight

Why am I saying that this group is phantom? Because there is no way I’m buying the excuse from anyone that “I don’t know who to vote for the office of president”. I just can’t believe this, and I’m going to explain why.

This isn’t a decision between wanting pizza or pasta? It’s not a decision between wanting cake or pie. This isn’t even close; you’re one way or the other when it comes to what you believe politically; come out of the closet on this one.

Every country that is a democracy has at least two political parties to choose from. Each political party has drastically diverse beliefs on how things should go. If they didn’t have drastically diverse beliefs, there would be no need to have at least two political parties.

The United States is no different in this regard. Sure, there are some minor political parties that have some candidates in the race (Roseanne Barr would be one of those this year), and yes, third-party candidates have made an impact on electing a president here and there (Ross Perot and Ralph Nader as examples), but it’s not the norm.

There are a few people out there who are saying to anyone who’ll listen to them that they’re not sure who they’re going to vote for because they’re not sure who the best person is for the economy. Are you kidding me? With everything else that’s on the line, no matter what party you belong to, you’re really going to try to convince me that you don’t know who to vote for because of the economy?

What I tend to believe is that the undecided are really people who are scared to let anybody know who they want to vote for. I have never met a single person who realistically could tell me that they didn’t know who they were going to vote for until they walked into the voting station. Come on now, let’s look at a short list of issues:

Are you pro-choice or are you pro-life?

Are you for or against gun control?

Are you for or against universal healthcare?

Do you believe the rich should pay fewer taxes because they create jobs or that everyone should pay their fair share?

Do you believe the federal government should stay totally out of your life or do you believe there are some things the federal government should help protect people with such as Welfare, Medicare, and disaster relief?

Now, those are American issues, and major issues when it comes to the presidential election, and I’m sure every other country has issues that are diametrically opposed that are core to particular political parties. Those are also issues when it comes to any of the federal offices up for grabs. Every once in a while you find a candidate that agrees with the candidate on the other side on a particular issue, but you can bet they’re not going to agree on all those issues and any other issue that comes up. And of course you might support the ideals of a third party candidate; no problem there either.

In general though, this means one of two things, at least in my opinion. One, you’re afraid to take a stand because you’re worried that someone is going to hate you. Two, you have no idea what any of the issues mean and you’re probably going to vote for someone based on a stupid reason such as the way they look or what their voice sounds like. Yeah, I said it.

Something I’ve talked about on this blog and my business blog is that we all have to take accountability for our actions while still being brave enough to take the opportunities to improve our lives. If you are wishy-washy in your political beliefs then you’re probably wishy-washy in the rest of your life. How’s that working out for you?

Frankly, even though I believe more people should take advantage of their constitutional right and get out to the polls and vote, I also believe there are some people who should just stay home and leave it to the adults who aren’t afraid to let their opinions be known.

And by being known, I’m not saying that you need to go out on the street and declare who you’re going to be voting for. What I’m saying is that if someone asks you if you’ve made a decision, just tell them the truth, say yes, and if you don’t feel like revealing it to them tell them that as well.

But if you say you’re undecided, you know you’re lying and I’m calling you out on. Now, try to convince me I’m wrong.

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I don’t think you’ll get anyone to convince you they are truly undecided Mitch! The campaigns aren’t in the selling business anymore (well maybe Mitt is in a couple of swing states) It’s all about getting your folks to the polls. GOTV
Phil recently posted…College 2.0My Profile

September 28th, 2012 | 3:47 PM

You’re absolutely right Phil and that’s kind of my point here. People might not know on a more local level who they’re voting for but for president, senate and the House, they definitely know.

September 28th, 2012 | 10:24 PM

Personally, I think the undecided are that way because of ignorance, either they don’t have an interest to learn more or, as I was brought up, they think that their vote won’t make any difference what-so-ever because the whole thing is rigged.

September 28th, 2012 | 5:31 PM

And that’s a shame Jasmin because without everyone participating, we never really know what the country is thinking. But I tend to believe that not even deep down people know what they support if they plan on voting.

September 28th, 2012 | 10:25 PM
Holly Jahangiri:

Even if the whole thing WERE rigged (and I don’t QUITE believe that – yet), it’s no reason not to vote and preserve your right to complain later. πŸ™‚

If it’s NOT rigged, and your vote could have made the difference, how will you feel having tipped the scales – possibly in the wrong direction?

Mitch, what I hear more than “I’m undecided” is “They’re all alike. They’re all corrupt liars.” I’ve decided: Even if it’s true, some are more credible and at least profess to stand for what I stand for, so I’m still making my voice heard by voting for them.

I’m also really tired of the BS. I am now pretty completely polarized, myself. There’s really not an “undecided” bone in my body.
Holly Jahangiri recently posted…Yeah, I’m a Twit, Too!My Profile

September 28th, 2012 | 10:51 PM

Same here Holly. You know, there’s just so much of a dichotomy when it comes to the issues that it’s inconceivable that someone hasn’t made up their mind. And saying “they’re all crooks anyway” doesn’t get it done. Now, if people aren’t going to vote anyway then they should just go away and deal with whatever comes. But with these issues and the rhetoric, there is no middle road.

September 29th, 2012 | 2:10 AM

First Mitch, props for taking a stand on a political subject. I always appreciate people with opinions and guts.

At the same time though, I found it interesting how you mentioned the issues.

For example, I’m pro gun control, but I’m not for the banning of guns (despite the fact that I have no desire whatsoever to own one.)

I believe everyone should pay their fair share of taxes, and to me, fair means “same percentage”

I don’t believe the government should stay totally out of my life but I believe they should be much more limited than they currently are.

But again, I give you props for writing something like this bud. πŸ™‚
Marcus Sheridan-The Sales Lion recently posted…The Age of Disgruntled Marketing Employees Turned Renegades is HereMy Profile

September 28th, 2012 | 7:32 PM

Thanks for stopping by Marcus; heck, I wrote about you in another post recently and told people to go find you, and I guess no one did. lol

I was going to the extremes in those examples because that’s always how it’s laid out, but you caught my drift. I agree with you on the guns thing and I’d have to put the numbers together to figure out what I think fair share means because I’m not sure that someone making $2,000 a year and having to pay $200 is the same as someone making a million and having to pay $200,000, if you know what I mean.

Still, I think that in general people know where they stand on the issues, and there really isn’t any undecided when all is said and done, just an unwillingness to commit to an answer in public.

September 28th, 2012 | 10:34 PM
Holly Jahangiri:

Marcus, I agree with you on most of those issues. I am socialist when it comes to basic human needs and infrastructure, and pure capitalist when it comes to wants. πŸ˜‰ And I’m voting Democrat.

I’m pro education, pro science, and not atheist.

I’m pro choice. I’m also pro life and all for freedom of religion, but ultimately believe women are the only ones who have the right to say what goes on with their bodies and woe to anyone who tries to forcibly convert me to any way of thinking or believing.

I want everyone to have decent, affordable healthcare. I think that, and education, should be our highest priorities.

I’m with you on guns and gun control. There’s a reason the Constitution protects our right to bear arms, and I think the fact that our government has nukes makes it largely symbolic – but I’m a writer and I’m into symbolism.

I’m pro business but anti-monopoly and anti-corruption and corporations are NOT people.

I’m not saying this here to start an argument with anyone. I think getting informed helps people to formulate their values. If they value nothing, it’s possible – I suppose – to be undecided. But if they value anything, surely they can prioritize and identify their most important values and align those to a vote.
Holly Jahangiri recently posted…Yeah, I’m a Twit, Too!My Profile

September 28th, 2012 | 10:59 PM

Hi Mitch, you’re right of course but there are people, and I know a couple, who are so cynical about governments, (the UK one in this case but I’m sure it applies across the Pond) that they feel they’re all as bad as each other.

I myself care little about politics, especially UK ones as all the ‘teeth’ are in Brussels these days and nothing important gets decided here. But when I do vote, I vote Green, not because the Green candidate has a hope in hell, but because I know the other parties watch trends on how to scoop up more voters and they might change some of theirs if they see enough moving in a certain direction.

September 28th, 2012 | 8:40 PM

Roz, I’d agree that sometimes when voting you’re holding your nose, and yet when all is said and done we know which candidate is going to support the views we have more often than not, at least for major candidates. Having said that, I won’t always vote for them in the major party category because I might have my issues with some of what that party represents, but I’ll always vote for the people I want.

September 28th, 2012 | 10:29 PM

While we do have political parties, many in fact, we also have independents standing for every election starting from our village councils moving up to municipalities all the way up to our national parliament.

There is little to choose from either two or more venal characters who stand for elections here. The most principled political party has recently been behaving like hooligans and indulging in what you folks call filibustering in our parliament which I have found to be most disgusting. I had always voted for them before but will not in the future.

I would most certainly like to see a “None of the above” option on our ballot papers.
Rummuser recently posted…Faces.My Profile

September 28th, 2012 | 9:23 PM

LOL! The problem with “none of the above” is that if it wins then what do you do? If you start over it costs even more money and if left to a council to put someone into office, which is actually how it would happen here in the States if a candidate didn’t get enough electoral votes to win outright, then you never know who they’ll pick, and that person might not be representative of the country in any way. Sometimes we shouldn’t get what we ask for.

September 28th, 2012 | 10:31 PM

This is exactly the subject of conversation that I had with my friends the other day. Nowadays, eventually all conversation finally goes down the presidential election route and so did this one. And one of these guys just said, ” I don’t know man. Are any of these people really up for the job? I mean I did think Obama would do something but now I’m not sure I want him to have a second term. On the other hand, I don’t who among the rest deserve this chance?” Although there was someone who did retort back at this guy (and it sadly wasn’t me) but this definitely got me thinking. Somehow, these ‘undecided’ people get into the voting booth and all of a sudden, they have an epiphany and they know whom to vote for. Either that or they are just plain cowards worried that their choice may not be well received by all. But then it is a democracy, isn’t it? So stand up and say it aloud and be proud of your choice.

September 29th, 2012 | 1:21 AM

Exactly Harry. There are so many excuses one way or another and, well, let’s face the fact that little got done the last 2 years because both sides decided they didn’t want to play well together. That part is the truth. However, both sides have drastically different viewpoints, which explains why nothing got done, and without having one ourselves and voting our conscious, the other side gets to decide for everyone, and that’s why it’s important to vote, and also to at least know for sure what you’re voting for and stop lying by saying you don’t know because you do. Great stuff from you!

September 29th, 2012 | 2:14 AM

I believe voting is our constitutional right and we must not waste it. Voting for the wrong candidate will no doubt harass us only in future. As far as the candidates are concerned, all adults must take active participation in these political activities, voting for the sake of voting will not help and if you are not aware of whom to vote, you don’t know what your life is gonna be like, just because you are undecisive and careless about life.

September 29th, 2012 | 4:17 AM

Interesting stuff Nelson. And you’re actually right, people showing up who have no idea who they want to vote for are pretty much wasting their time. Still, if they can we hope they’ll vote and vote their conscience.

September 29th, 2012 | 9:49 PM

Hello Mitch, very often people are mislead and they are making mistakes. Bad parties bring upfront good guys so that ordinary people vote for him. After the vote, the good guy gets bad as well. I think is a people marketing strategy very well established.

September 29th, 2012 | 9:32 AM

Radu, I don’t often see politicians in terms of good or bad. I might not like someone’s politics but I think even within those parties there are people who are good and bad. Thus, I don’t think anyone goes good or bad either, but will end up being the products of the circumstances which they inherit.

September 29th, 2012 | 10:10 PM

I respect your opinion and i will not try to convince you otherwise. The point is all bad things require a good thing to be promoted. In this case, the parties will do whatever is their agenda promoted by nice smiley faces.
Radu recently posted…Profile 253My Profile

October 1st, 2012 | 10:54 AM

Everybody have some preferences. I doubt that there can be anybody that doesn’t have own opinion.

September 29th, 2012 | 11:02 AM

That’s my point Carl; anyone saying it isn’t being truthful in my opinion.

September 29th, 2012 | 10:11 PM

Honestly Mitch, I rarely vote for any party or popular person. They all look quite nice and throw so many promises, however human nature always win and when they got the power they forget about people. The gap between poverty and prosperity is getting wider. Corruption is getting deeper, people do not vote, because they do not believe in anybody.
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September 30th, 2012 | 10:23 AM

I agree Mitch you should have your mind made up by now. This is not where you procrastinate to pay your taxes on the last day because you hate giving away money.

I think some people like the attention that comes along with being indecisive about the President. Media love controversy so people can get the attention of a lot of people if they hold out.
Michael Belk recently posted…Are NFL fans partially to blame for the referee strike?My Profile

September 29th, 2012 | 4:32 PM

That’s part of my belief as well Michael. With all the things out there that are so far apart from each other anyone truly undecided must not know what’s going on in either the world or this country.

September 29th, 2012 | 10:30 PM

I rarely comment on anything political as I regard it personal but I also wonder about the ‘undecided’. Here in the UK we call them ‘Floating Voters’. I’ve been that way possibly twice in my life and the main reason was that while my parents were politically inclined and well informed, I was quite ignorant for a lot of my growing years and really, literally didn’t have a clue. These days it’s different. I not only have a clue but regard myself as fairly well educated on the issues. However, that’s British politics, not American. Apart from the extremes of your two main parties, I’m unclear about a lot of it – the whole American political system seems unnecessarily complex. (I tried to read Obama’s second book – having read and enjoyed his autobiography – and couldn’t even get past the first chapter!)

That said, when Obama was elected, if I’d been American I would have been one of those who’d voted him in. There is no way I’d vote Republican (unless they change a lot)so if I were to dislike the majority of the policies of the Democrats, what would I vote? However, as I’m not an American, I don’t have that problem… your fellow countrymen and women do.
Val recently posted…If this were a road map I’d be lost.My Profile

September 29th, 2012 | 9:16 PM

Val, there are always 3rd party candidates if one doesn’t wish to vote for the top two, but they’re normally a more extreme version of the main two parties, so there’s no middle ground. That’s what I mean by there being no such thing as “undecided”. Uninformed, as you said, is a different thing, but even there, I’m of the opinion that if one doesn’t have anything they care about then we hope they don’t vote at all.

September 29th, 2012 | 10:15 PM

I’ll just add this as again I forgot to check the comment notification box!

September 29th, 2012 | 9:18 PM

Mitch I believe you’re right on sir. Listening to the local and national news coverage during the DNC visit to Charlotte this year and it sounded like NC would be a battleground with all the undecided voters. Yet, like you mentioned, I have not come across one single person that doesn’t know which candidate they’re voting for.

I’ll take it one step further and say I believe that the hype on undecided voters is just a media strategy. I seriously doubt whether there are enough ‘undecided’ voters to warrant such coverage by the networks. Have you even noticed this subject tops the headlines on a slow news day? πŸ˜‰
KD Rush recently posted…Hoarding for WritersMy Profile

September 30th, 2012 | 3:06 AM

Hey KD. You know, that’s an interesting observation you’ve made. Truthfully, I think it seems like we hear it every day because hearing what’s going on as candidates visit states and don’t say anything earth shatteringly good or bad is a slow news day. I bet all the news services work hard to find those few undecided voters because, like you, they certainly don’t seem prevalent.

September 30th, 2012 | 11:38 AM

Same story everywhere, Mitch. There are a number of people who really can’t decide and then there are those who pretend that they can’t make up their minds. For the first type, what I can really say is that these people probably don’t care enough to know and choose the right leader. The second type are not sure whether their choice is the widely accepted public opinion and therefore would like to keep their mouth shut for fear of ridicule. The common thing among both these types is that they are the first to complain should something go wrong on the part of the government. Basically, you can’t do much to help these people unless they choose to consciously change their way of thinking. However it doesn’t hurt to give them a piece of your mind when you come across them.

September 30th, 2012 | 11:57 PM

It’s interesting Chris. I was reading a news story about some people who supposedly were undecided, which I put the link to in one of my comments here, and those folks actually know their positions, but are unwilling to stick with them, thinking the other guy might change things, whoever the other guy is. I find that silly but hey, whatever people want to believe wherever they are right?

October 1st, 2012 | 8:47 PM

I believe everyone of us has a choice, in whatever topic it may be. But the question is whether we want to disclose it or not. Now with political preferences there is always the risk of the opposition, so people just might not be ready to take unwanted trouble by disclosing their preferences. And I think this is right. But yes if people say they do not know whom to vote for, I would call it a blatant lie.

October 1st, 2012 | 4:40 AM

I’m with you Nelson. There are no middle of the road voters on topics like what I presented. You can go to an extreme on any topic, but middle of the road… nope, can’t see it.

October 1st, 2012 | 8:48 PM

Well, let me share a different perspective. It’s my constitutional right not to vote. Yeah, I choose not to choose.

I’m 24 years old and I never voted and probably never will anytime soon. The way I see, when voting, I’m obligate to choose between a couple of people I don’t agree with, at all. And choosing the lesser evil its not enough for me, like its not enough the false impression that I somehow had a say in everything that is happening with my country.

From my perspective (I’m not from US by the way) if you have self-centered, ignorant, lying, stupid, uneducated citizens you are gonna have self-centered, ignorant, lying, stupid and uneducated politicians. And voting will mean I’m gonna do it their way…I’m not going to do it their way.
Cristian Balau recently posted…Kitchen Floorsβ€” Tile ColorsMy Profile

October 3rd, 2012 | 6:43 AM

I actually appreciate that Cristian; at least you acknowledge up front that you don’t care and that’s a bad position to be in when it comes to voting. Of course I don’t know where you’re from, so I don’t know if you had people who literally gave their lives for your right to vote like I do; makes for a much different discussion. Still, you’re also not an undecided voter, so the article wouldn’t apply to someone like you.

October 4th, 2012 | 12:32 AM

Hi Mitch!
people should know to which person are giving there vote.tthe person is right or wrong.we have choice to vote anyone but it depend on us that we selected right person.i agree with you mitch.i like your blog.

October 4th, 2012 | 3:05 AM

Anshul, I think people do know; that’s kind of my point. Now, if they don’t wish to vote then that’s something else.

October 4th, 2012 | 11:05 PM

I do care and I’m pretty sure I care a lot more then my average fellow citizen that do actually vote.

I’m from Romania, and yes, in 1989 brave people gave their lives for the revolution, so we can have freedom and a democratic government. But the actually changes never happened, sure we are “free” now but the high level of corruption is even greater and we still haven’t switch to a modern democratic way of governing ourselves even though we are now part of EU and NATO. People forgot about those heroes that died in the streets during the revolution and I’m sure they didn’t had this in mind thinking about the future…

October 4th, 2012 | 9:18 PM

Same here Cristian. Actually, I run into a lot of people who think there’s nothing to honor about people from the past, and that’s just a shame. More people seem to only care about themselves these days and nothing else, and that’s just not right.

October 4th, 2012 | 11:12 PM

Yeah I’m glad to see you write about this kind of stuff everyone is so worked up cheering for their team I think they have forgotten why?
Jacko recently posted…Thank God for GandhiMy Profile

October 16th, 2012 | 5:35 PM

I agree Jacko, some do. Being informed is so easy.

October 17th, 2012 | 2:38 AM