The level of stress that accompanies the job of President of the United States is unfathomable to most of us. We have witnessed the intense physical impact by just observing the gradual graying of each President’s hair as his term of office progressed. Yet we know that this is only one of the many physical and emotional manifestations of the stress inherent to this position. It is therefore our expectation that the individual entering this job begins with the emotional and physical health necessary to carry out the tasks and responsibilities with balance, stability and energy. In making our decision every four years, this fundamental bit of information must be factored in. It is obvious that the Republicans have either forgotten or chosen to ignore this issue.
Watching Trump’s press conference Tuesday was a jarring experience. He used it both as an opportunity to tell us how wonderful and charitable he is, while at the same time telling us how wrong and evil anyone who disagreed with him is. In other words he is great and anyone who doesn’t agree with him is simply stupid or evil. He takes every occasion to make this point as he tells us that he and he alone will make America great again. Those who choose to share in this noble undertaking must join with him. Those who don’t are obviously wrongheaded or stupid. He is the only one with the answers. He is the only one who knows the path to greatness. His statements and actions are clearly opportunistic and often contradictory. He excuses past actions or misdeeds with the flimsy explanation that ‘he is a businessman”. Is that how Trump will explain away his excesses or inconsistencies as President?
Trump presents a world with little nuance. It is a universe with only blacks and whites. While he is certainly not an unintelligent man, he presents a level of understanding that appears to be simplistic. This is reflected in his proposed solutions to extraordinarily complex issues. Building walls, barring Muslims, dropping out of NATO, calling Climate Change a hoax, claiming that all gun control laws are a threat the 2nd Amendment are just a few of the positions that illustrate this point. These are all obviously extreme positions that speak directly to the fears and attitudes of a segment of our population. It is no accident that Trump said that “he loves the uneducated”. He certainly doesn’t want to discuss these issues with those who have a broader understanding or awareness. He depends on those who will accept what he says as the gospel and, as he, will denigrate any who so dare as to question his positions.
Trump has proven himself to be of a mind that the ends justify the means. This has again become clear as the records of Trump University have just been unsealed. He is, and always has been an opportunist. His business dealings seem to reflect an amoral attitude and his success is a result of that. To Quote Richard Nixon from a statement made on April 6, 1977, “if the President does it, that means in it’s not illegal”. This attitude carries over to Trumps behavior who operates on the premise that if it is good for him, it must be good for everyone unless they are wrongheaded, stupid or evil. This kind of thinking gave rise to the infamous “enemies list” and ultimately impeachment. Do we want to live through that kind of nightmare again? With Trump, whose behavior is that of an opportunistic narcissist, it is quite likely.
As I noted earlier, the position of President of the United States comes with enormous stress. A healthy ego and body are certainly necessary to withstand all that will be confronted in a term of office. However, beginning such responsibilities with such a warped ego endangers us all. This Presidential campaign has been tailor-made to meet the needs of a opportunisitic narcissist. It satiates every pore and fulfills every need. Donald Trump, an opportunistic narcissist will serve himself before his nation. He will be a danger to both our country and the world.