Sitting in a preschool classroom, I often heard children arguing about petty topics. “My action figure is more powerful,” one kid said. “No, mine is,” the other exclaimed. The kids were put on a time out afterward — but continued yelling at each other across the room. “This is your fault,” and “I hate you,” they shouted.
It was clear that they were following their impulses. They were not thoroughly thinking about their words or actions, but that’s expected. They are preschoolers, after all.
Psychologically speaking, children act on their amygdala, a region of the brain that is responsible for immediate reactions. And this is because their prefrontal cortex, the area of the brain that helps us think before acting, does not fully develop until the age of 25. So, their yelling and toy-throwing is only silly, not worrying.
President Donald Trump’s impulsive actions, however, are plenty distressful. Every time he puts his fingers on the Twitter keyboard, our country is not only embarrassed, but threatened.
Similarly, but much more severely than preschoolers arguing about trivial matters, Trump quarrels with North Korea’s dictator about which country has a more powerful nuclear-weapon arsenal.
“North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un just stated that the ‘Nuclear Button is on his desk at all times,’” he tweeted earlier this month. “Will someone from his depleted and food starved regime please inform him that I too have a Nuclear Button, but it is a much bigger & more powerful one than his, and my Button works!”
Trump discusses life-or-death topics with such indifference — not realizing that human lives are at stake.
And it does not stop there. Newsweek previously reported that Trump does not read his daily intelligence briefings. Instead, he prefers big pictures and “killer graphics.” The fact that the leader of the free world does not comprehend how vital it is to read intelligence reports — and, as an alternative, observes photographs — is troubling. He can easily be compared to a teenager who chooses to watch the movie instead of reading a book assigned in English class.
And now, even former administrators from the Trump White House are sharing how unfit he is for the presidency. Katie Walsh, former Deputy Chief of Staff, has reportedly said that working with Trump is like “trying to figure out what a child wants.”
These examples are only the tip of the iceberg. Trump constantly portrays infantile behavior. His impulses are equivalent to an adolescent’s. So the fact that he has full control over about 6,800 nuclear warheads is spine-chilling.
Once again, our country is witnessing a significant truth: elections matter. Due to our president’s behavior, foreign countries are ridiculing us, and we are facing high nuclear tensions. The last time nuclear threats were as high as they are now was during the Cuban Missile Crisis — more than 55 years ago. Our country has become less safe and weaker in the global perception.
Preschoolers tend to experience continual urges that impact their behavior. But, unlike our President, they are not sitting behind the Roosevelt Desk. The next chance to place a check on Trump’s juvenile compulsions will be in November. So until then, buckle up. Based on the past year, his actions will likely become more deranged every day.