We’re only three months into Donald Trump’s presidency and much of the world is teetering on the brink of catastrophe. Trump has launched dozens of missiles into Syria. He dropped the biggest non-nuclear bomb in Afghanistan. He’s shaking his tiny fists at Iran and North Korea. Never mind that he can’t remember what his policies were last month and can’t keep track of his naval “armada.”
Domestically Trump is just as disorganized and incompetent. A promise to repeal ObamaCare was unceremoniously abandoned after Congress refused to even hold a vote. His ban on Muslims coming into the country was halted by several federal court rulings. The wall on the Mexican border isn’t being built, and neither Mexico nor Congress will pay for it. You have to wonder if he is tired of winning yet.
These failures may just be the result of someone with zero experience trying to run a government he never liked to begin with. Or they may be symptoms of something much more ominous.
A group of psychiatric doctors and academics are meeting at Yale University this week. Their purpose is to explore whether “Donald Trump is too mentally ill to serve.” In the words of John Gartner, a former a part-time assistant professor of psychiatry at Johns Hopkins University Medical School, “We feel, as mental health professionals, that we have a duty to the public to warn them about Donald Trump’s mental illness.”
Gartner represents a group of psychiatrists called Duty to Warn. They’re engaged in a lobbying effort to persuade members of Congress that Trump’s mental fitness precludes him from holding office. The group asserts that Trump displays symptoms of a variety of mental illnesses, including antisocial and narcissistic personality disorders. A petition advocating Trump’s removal from office has already surpassed 41,000 signatures.
This isn’t the first time that people in the field have expressed concern about Trump’s mental state. Earlier reports cited indications of Trump suffering from malignant narcissism. And a group of Harvard professors expressed ‘grave concerns’ about his “inability to distinguish between fantasy and reality.”
What’s more, a concerned, bipartisan coalition in Congress has proposed legislation mandating a new post of White House Psychiatrist. And when members of congress come together to agree on something this controversial, there’s a fair chance that the concerns have merit. In Trump’s case, the symptoms are so obvious it doesn’t even take a profession to recognize them. His paranoia, hypersensitivity, childish tantrums, and fits of delusions couldn’t be more evident. Unfortunately, neither is the risk that his mental flaws pose to the nation and the world. He needs serious professional help, and if he doesn’t get it we’re all going to need help before too long.