It is hard to believe that it is just four weeks since Donald Trump was inaugurated as the 45th President of the United States. In that short space of time Trump has behaved so erratically that many are now questioning the President’s mental health. The New York Times today reflects on the comments of numerous mental health professionals who are seriously questioning Donald Trump’s sanity. These accusations are not new, many doubted Trump’s suitability to serve in the office of president long before he won November’s election. After just four weeks in office, the whispers about Trump’s mental health have turned into screams.
In December, the Huffington Post reported that prominent psychiatrists had written to President Obama over concerns about Trump’s suitability to hold office.
“[Donald Trump’s] widely reported symptoms of mental instability — including grandiosity, impulsivity, hypersensitivity to slights or criticism, and an apparent inability to distinguish between fantasy and reality — lead us to question his fitness for the immense responsibilities of the office.”
Now a group of 35 psychiatrists have written to the New York Times raising further questions about President Trump’s capacity to serve.
“Mr. Trump’s speech and actions demonstrate an inability to tolerate views different from his own, leading to rage reactions. His words and behavior suggest a profound inability to empathize. Individuals with these traits distort reality to suit their psychological state, attacking facts and those who convey them (journalists, scientists).”
“In a powerful leader, these attacks are likely to increase, as his personal myth of greatness appears to be confirmed. We believe that the grave emotional instability indicated by Mr. Trump’s speech and actions makes him incapable of serving safely as president.”
There can be no doubt that Donald Trump has been widely criticized in the media. His behavior after a judge declared his travel ban on people from seven predominantly Muslim countries, illegal was extraordinary. To see the U.S. president use his personal Twitter account to attack a member of the judiciary was totally unprecedented.
Let’s reflect on the fact that President Trump has been in the oval office for just four weeks. We should also remember that Trump’s first 100-days in office are a honeymoon period. A period where Trump should be winning over the doubters, fostering relationships with the media, and overseas governments and garnering support for his policies. Instead, in that short time Trump has consistently attacked the media. Trump has attacked the intelligence community, and he conducted serious matters of state in his golf club, surrounded by members of the general public.
In short, Trump’s behavior has been extraordinary, but nothing that he has done to date was more extraordinary than Donald Trump’s press conference yesterday.
Donald Trump’s Press Conference To Attack The Press
Yesterday we saw Donald Trump call an unexpected press conference. President Trump called the world’s media together to attack them. Trump branded any criticism of his actions as “fake news,” demonstrating that he will listen to no one but himself. We even saw the almost unbelievable sight of the world’s media booing and heckling the president of the United States.
The media are, of course, absolutely correct to question Trump over his links with Russia and over his failure, despite his promises, to make his tax affairs public. Instead of making good on his promises, Trump attacks those who are attempting to hold him to account. Trump attacked the media over the issue of his deposed National Security Advisor.
As reported by the Independent Flynn resigned, after he was found to have had contact with the Russian security services. Flynn had also misled vice-president Pence over that contact. Trump was angry, not at Flynn for allegedly acting illegally, but at the media and the security service for finding him out.
The Guardian called Trump’s anti-press conference “a freak show,” and went on to say that if Donald Trump is qualified for any job, it is as “a media critic on Fox News.” It would be funny if Trump was not the leader of the western world.
Trump criticizes the media for propagating “fake news” whilst his advisor, Kellyanne Conway, is being banned from TV news programs because she deals in “alternative facts.” Conway was behind the fake “Bowling Green Massacre” story, a fake terrorist attack that she used to justify Trump’s travel ban. We have seen Trump’s press secretary falsely claim that the crowd who saw Trump’s inauguration to be the “biggest ever.”
Now, according to the Washington Post, Omarosa Manigault, a member of Trump’s communication team, has threatened journalists with “secret dossiers” and claims that they will be made to bow down before Trump.
One must wonder what Trump’s next move will be. President Trump wants a media that only shows him in a positive light. Trump does not want to be challenged, how long before Trump signs an executive order to gain control of the media to curb free speech?
Donald Trump yesterday told the assembled press that his regime is “running like a well-oiled machine,” that may be true, but after four weeks in office, it already looks like a machine whose wheels have come off.
[Featured Image by Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP Images]