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In Interview, Psychologist Raises Alarm on Trump’s Cognitive Decline and Unbounded Sociopathy

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Dr. John Gartner, a noted psychologist and contributor to “The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump,” has expressed deep concerns about Donald Trump’s mental health in an interview with Salon’s Chauncey DeVega. Gartner, alarmed by Trump’s accelerating cognitive decline amidst potential criminal trials and the upcoming 2024 presidential campaign, has also highlighted the dangerous interplay between Trump’s cognitive issues and his sociopathic tendencies.

“Sociopathy, characterized by a lack of empathy, disregard for societal norms, and often manipulative or aggressive behavior, is significantly dangerous on its own,” Gartner states. “However, when you combine these traits with the cognitive impairments associated with dementia, such as judgment erosion and impulse control loss, the situation becomes exponentially more perilous.”

Gartner’s analysis goes beyond the observation of Trump’s cognitive decline, pointing out behaviors that suggest severe psychological issues, including traits consistent with sociopathy. “Trump’s consistent disregard for the truth, manipulation of his followers, and lack of remorse for harmful actions align with sociopathic tendencies,” Gartner notes. He stresses the urgency of addressing Trump’s cognitive incapacity, a concern that has resonated internationally, underscoring widespread observations of Trump’s deteriorating mental fitness.

The psychologist’s concerns are not just about natural aging but hint at significant cognitive impairment, exacerbated by Trump’s sociopathic behaviors. Gartner criticizes the media’s and mental health professionals’ silence on these issues, attributing it to fears of professional backlash or personal retaliation in a politically charged environment.

Gartner’s observations of Trump’s recent public appearances—struggling with speech and demonstrating confusion—serve as evidence of cognitive decline. However, Gartner emphasizes that Trump’s sociopathy, characterized by a lack of empathy and aggressive behavior, could become more pronounced as cognitive functions deteriorate. “When you combine cognitive impairments associated with dementia with sociopathic tendencies, such as judgment erosion and impulse control loss, the situation becomes exponentially more dangerous,” Gartner explains.

Despite the severity of Trump’s condition, Gartner acknowledges the human instinct to empathize with those who appear vulnerable. Yet, he calls for greater transparency from the media to highlight the potential dangers posed by Trump’s condition, criticizing the lack of coverage on Trump’s cognitive decline and its dangerous interplay with sociopathic characteristics.

In differentiating between normal aging and cognitive decline, Gartner stresses that Trump’s symptoms suggest a deterioration far beyond Biden’s natural aging process. He advocates for a comprehensive evaluation of Trump’s mental health to understand the extent of his cognitive decline fully. Gartner’s insights underscore the importance of openly addressing mental health, especially in evaluating the fitness of political leaders, considering the unique threat posed by the combination of cognitive decline and sociopathic tendencies in a figure like Donald Trump.