16/02/2017 10:07 AM IST | Updated 16/02/2017 11:39 AM IST

Psychiatrist: Calling Donald Trump Mentally Ill Is An Insult To The Mentally Ill

Carlo Allegri / Reuters
Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump appears at a campaign rally in Sioux City, Iowa, U.S. November 6, 2016. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri

A leading psychiatrist is pushing back after a group of industry professionals wrote a letter to The New York Times saying Donald Trump suffers from “grave emotional instability” that “makes him incapable of serving safely as president.”

But it’s not exactly a letter of support for the president. 

Allen Frances, professor emeritus of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Duke University Medical College, told the newspaper that he wrote the criteria for narcissistic personality disorder ― and Trump doesn’t meet it.

“He may be a world-class narcissist, but this doesn’t make him mentally ill, because he does not suffer from the distress and impairment required to diagnose mental disorder,” he wrote. 

He added:  

“Mr. Trump causes severe distress rather than experiencing it and has been richly rewarded, rather than punished, for his grandiosity, self-absorption and lack of empathy. It is a stigmatizing insult to the mentally ill (who are mostly well behaved and well meaning) to be lumped with Mr. Trump (who is neither).”

Frances called on others in the industry to stop “psychiatric name-calling” and instead denounce Trump “for his ignorance, incompetence, impulsivity and pursuit of dictatorial powers.”

Read the full letter here.

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