Trump the stable 🐎 genius

trump brain.jpg

WHAT: Last year, a group of psychiatrists wrote a book called “The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump: 27 Psychiatrists and Mental Health Experts Assess a President”, which became a bestseller. This past week Trump faced intense scrutiny as the world evaluated his mental stability, with conflicting reports from doctors and mental health professionals. On Saturday evening, Trump launched his defense, saying that he is a ‘very stable genius’.

CLAIMS: The book claims Trump is dangerous in office because he has symptoms of violence, including ‘impulsivity, recklessness, paranoia, a loose grip on reality with a poor understanding of consequences, rage reactions, and a lack of empathy’. In addition, there are claims that Trump may have NPD (Narcissistic Personality Disorder) or Alzheimers.

WHY IT MATTERS:  According to the 25th Amendment, the POTUS can be impeached for being unable to complete the duties of office for any reason, including mental illness. If Trump is deemed mentally unfit for presidency, then he could lose his seat in the Oval Office.

The right argues this book should not be taken seriously because the psychiatrists never personally interviewed Trump. The consensus is that these claims are political statements instead of realistic health concerns. The right also argues that these claims are ‘gaslighting’ by the left - attempts to spread false information about prominent figures in media to damage public opinion. 

The left acknowledges that psychiatrists cannot make claims about mental health without an examination of a patient, but they argue that Trump makes enough public appearances that doctors can make reasonable guesses about his mental state. The left uses psychiatrists as "experts" to push the narrative that Trump is "dangerous" by pointing to instances such as the time when he told a crowd at one of his rallies to get rough with the press. 

Are these claims legit?
This feels like an attack on the President to explain his "erratic" behavior. However, simply being outspoken and brash does not make one mentally unfit. Psychiatrists have to be careful to stay within the ethics of the Goldwater rule, which states that they are not allowed to provide a professional assessment of a public figure without examining them first. As a result, these psychiatrists are careful to note that they think the President is "dangerous" but not necessarily mentally unfit. This is a subtle difference and can be misleading to a reader.


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