Dr. Bandy X. Lee got her moment in the spotlight this month when it was revealed that she spoke to several Democratic lawmakers at the end of last year about President Trump’s supposedly-deteriorating psychological state. The psychiatrist used this revelation as a platform to go all over television and warn the public that Trump was either sliding into the early stages of Alzheimer’s or suffering from some other psychological malady that made him unfit to hold office. She called on the president to undergo mental tests as a way of proving to America that he was, indeed, perfectly capable of being the commander-in-chief.
So that’s what Trump did.
Answering both Lee and her psychiatric cohorts (who have been publicly criticized by the American Psychology Association for their freelance diagnoses) as well as critics who think he’s dangerously out of shape, Trump underwent a full mental and physical battery of tests, performed by White House doctor Ronny Jackson, M.D. The results were comprehensive and conclusive. Not only was Trump in fine physical condition for a man his age – “excellent health,” in fact – but there was absolutely nothing wrong with his cognitive abilities.
Chastised and humiliated, Dr. Lee penned an op-ed for USA Today on Friday, insisting that the proof she requested and was subsequently given…was actually not proof of anything.
“Unfortunately, all that he received was a brief screen, the Montreal Cognitive Assessment, used to determine whether additional testing is needed for cognitive or Alzheimer’s issues,” she writes. “Here, there are already ample indicators that additional testing is indicated, and the results prove little more than the limitations of a single simple screen.”
Trump scored a perfect 30 out of 30 on the Montreal Cognitive Assessment, so it’s a little difficult to figure out where Dr. Lee is coming from when she says, “here, there are already ample indicators that additional testing is indicated.” And it is with an almost stunning lack of self-awareness that she gives us the sour-grapes conclusion: “The results prove little more than the limitations of a single simple screen.”
Right. And so what do you suppose Lee would say if Trump underwent all of the psychiatric evaluations that she prescribes and still came out with flying colors? “Oh, I guess I was wrong after all?” Doubtful. She would simply decry the process, impugn the reputation of the doctors, and call for yet more testing. Her identity and professional reputation now hinges on whether or not she was right, and that means she has nothing useful left to add to the conversation (if she ever did).
Go home, Dr. Lee. You’ve embarrassed yourself enough.