It doesn’t take a professional psychiatrist to observe that Donald Trump has a severe personality disorder. Although dozens of such professionals have already weighed in on the matter and regard him as both sick and dangerous. The symptoms of what some are calling malignant narcissism have become painfully obvious.
Trump’s recent behavior has done little to mitigate those warnings. He can’t seem to recall from one day to the next what he has said about critical issues. He is sabotaging his own agenda with tweets that contradict prior statements or chastise his own administration. He insults our international allies and praises hostile adversaries.
The mental condition of a president is something that is rarely discussed publicly. While partisans often mock political opponents as “nuts,” that’s generally a snide put-down that isn’t meant literally. But what makes the Trump presidency so extraordinary is that these observations are now being made by prominent people in the media. And they mean it. For example, a discussion took place Tuesday morning on MSNBC’s Morning Joe that encapsulated this trend:
Joe Scarborough: How you can tell that somebody is not well and that there’s a serious issue, is when they continually do things against self-interest. […]
Donny Deutsch: As to why he does things that seem to be self-destructive and seem to go against him, I think he clearly has a personality disorder. […]
Elise Jordan: The behavior pattern that he’s demonstrating right now is not normal. And I kind of want to dispense with political correctness for a bit and just say what everyone is thinking. This behavior is crazy. […]
Eugene Robinson: We must wonder about his emotional stability, his grasp of reality, or both.
These commentaries cannot be characterized as partisan attacks by anti-Trump activists. Scarborough is a conservative Republican and a longtime personal friend of Trump. Jordan is a right-winger and a was a Rand Paul staffer. Robinson is a liberal columnist, but he’s also a Pulitzer Prize winner, which speaks to his credentials. And they are only the tip of the iceberg.
The fact that so many people are willing to speak so openly about Trump’s mental health is telling in itself. The only historical parallel to this would be the insider talk about Ronald Reagan’s progressing Alzheimer’s. But that was all behind the scenes while he was in office and never addressed on a network news program. Donald Trump has changed all of that. And for good reason.
How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.