Dr. Lance M. Dodes, a former assistant professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, and Dr. Joseph Schachter, former chairman of the Committee on Research Proposals in the International Psychoanalytic Association, published a letter to the editor in The New York Times on February 13th.
Responding to a column, they wrote, "To the Editor: Charles M. Blow... describes Donald Trump’s constant need 'to grind the opposition underfoot.' As mental health professionals, we share Mr. Blow’s concern."
While the American Psychiatric Association prohibits mental health organizations from commenting on a public figure's condition, Dr. Dodes writes, "this silence has resulted in a failure to lend our expertise to worried journalists and members of Congress at this critical time. We fear that too much is at stake to be silent any longer."
According to Dodes and Schachter:
Mr. Trump’s speech and actions demonstrate an inability to tolerate views different from his own, leading to rage reactions. His words and behavior suggest a profound inability to empathize. Individuals with these traits distort reality to suit their psychological state, attacking facts and those who convey them (journalists, scientists).
The letter explains that the psychiatrists have chosen to speak up now, because "these attacks are likely to increase, as his personal myth of greatness appears to be confirmed."
And here's the kicker: "We believe that the grave emotional instability indicated by Mr. Trump’s speech and actions makes him incapable of serving safely as president."
The letter is cosigned by 34 other medical professionals.
While many might say it is unethical for therapists to offer their opinions after evaluating someone from afar, you could argue that it is no different than if a dermatologist spots a weird pattern on someone's face.