America has become a Twilight Zone Episode where people wake up in a world they don’t recognize. People are dying every day from a pandemic, and the President of the country convinces people to disregard medical advice from scientific experts about how to avoid infection. Is that a leader who is murderous or just pathologically insecure and needing to appear strong? In this altered world, the President is using military force against American citizens who are protesting peacefully. He is fiercely defending the Confederate flag while national attention is on systemic police brutality against black Americans. He lied about how he ended up in the White House bunker during the protests when his own officials contradict his story with facts. His pathological self-interest, lying, conspiracy theory beliefs, and agitated vindictiveness absolutely meet the criteria for a mental disturbance.
Additionally, Trump misinformed military officials about the goal of his photo op march during the protests in Lafayette Square. He wanted General Milley’s presence in the photo, which disregarded the military’s policy on remaining non- political. General Milley publicly apologized for participating in the stunt proclaiming he was not made aware of the purpose of the walk to St. John’s Church. He clarified that the military is trained and dedicated to protecting Americans from foreign threats and is not a political branch of government. Trump’ a pathological lying is a glaring sign he suffers from a personality disorder, and possibly a disorder in cognitive processing.
His distorted view of his power also indicates concerns about his mental state. For example, a United States President does not militarize its cities and states. That is how a dictator rules. A United States President does not break laws imbedded into the Constitution for his personal gain. Such an action violates the oath of the office of the presidency. Is Trump criminal, unpatriotic, mentally imbalanced, or all of the above. For his base not to question his fitness for office puts their patriotism or mental status in question.
Trump strongly exhibits traits of antisocial personality disorder, which includes lying, manipulating, and exploiting. He calls the truth ” fake news” and presents lies and conspiracy theories as facts. Democracy is based on truth and transparency, however Trump’s assault on journalism is damaging access to facts. A free press is unconstrained by governmental control or law enforcement, and its function is to report vital, factual information to the population. Autocratic governments do not have a constitution that gives the public the right to transparency from its government. The individual’s opinion does not matter in a dictatorship. The rights of the government far outweigh the rights of its people. Trump’s belief that Article II in the Constitution says he can do whatever he wants defines him as a dictator. This week democracy is fighting back at Trump’s pattern of lying, obstruction of justice, and abuse of power.
Former members of his Administration such as General John Kelly, Senior Advisor John Bolton, FBI Director Rod Rosenstein, Chief of Staff Reince Priebus, and countless others have been used, ridiculed, and fired when they disagreed with the President in even a minor way. His feigned display of respect and affection for people disappears as soon as his ego is threatened or when someone disagrees with him. His use of Twitter, which even his base dislikes, is the most documented proof that he is not stable and is not fit for the office of the presidency. Young adolescents, not yet fully matured in the area of social appropriateness, feeling empathy, and impulse control often tweet with same rudeness and dishonesty as Trump. Many mental health professionals have suggested disorders such narcissism, anti- social personality, or autism spectrum disorder explain some of Trump’s problematic behaviors and affective functioning.
Most of the many books written about Trump’s questionable mental status sight his own words, behaviors, and first-hand accounts by people who have known him for years. His anger, racist comments and policies, and mission to divide the country by race, party, gender, and geography, is unprecedented for an American president, but not for a dictator. Mental health professionals, journalists, and politicians have tried to fairly assess why his base is still loyal to him. One theory is he has cleverly structured a platform that elevates their white/religious priorities over all other issues related to the general population.
Like Trump, his supporters seem to crave attention, and he knows how to give it to them to keep them loyal. His greedy, wealthy supporters ignore his immorality and dangerous, impulsive governing because they have profitted from the tax cuts that are ballooning their bank accounts. The white, evangelical, uneducated part of his base may suffer from a variety of psychological issues such as low self-esteem or anxiety disorder related to social/financial challenges they face in their day to day life. Trump has seduced them into believing if they stand by him, he will alleviate their struggles and grievances. What is particularly indicative of their questionable psychological wellness is that after almost four years in office, they remain loyal even though his policies have not focused on their issues. His legislative wins have been a tax cut for the rich and deregulation policies for industries that benefit corporations. Yet, his base, like sheep, keep loyal to him despite his failures.
Americans have the chance in November to elect a President and a Senate that will bring sanity and morality back to a nation in crisis.