Veteran journalist and former CBS Evening News anchor Dan Rather ripped President Donald Trump’s “frankly unhinged” hour-long rant at his Tuesday night rally in Phoenix, AZ and said that the embattled president appears hell-bent on “gaslight”-ing the entire country.
In a Facebook post published in the hours after Trump’s rant before an adoring — if small — crowd in Phoenix, Rather said that Trump has developed a standard pattern for deflecting blame and denying reality.
“Blame the press. Blame President Obama. Insist down is up and up is down. Create an alternate reality. Gaslight. Gaslight. Gaslight. Misquote yourself. Leave out the words that outraged a majority of a nation,” Rather said.
The term “gaslighting” is the practice of psychologically manipulating someone into a constant state of fear and doubt by causing them to question the reality of their perceptions.
“He was the martyr to an unfair witch hunt,” wrote Rather. “His words after Charlottesville were in reality healing — if the press would just tell the truth. He was misquoted and taken out of context. He has drawn the battle lines to divide a nation between his ‘us’ and the ‘them’ of the others. And he basks in the swagger.”
The president’s vicious and constant attacks on the media, Rather said, are because “the press is a check on power. The press is performing its constitutional responsibilities. The investigative reporting has drawn blood.”
Brought to Earth by “the forces of political gravity,” Rather said, a cornered and embattled Trump is soaking up the love of his cultish followers and venting his spleen about his enemies — while managing to not fulfill even the most minimal duties of the office of U.S. president.
Tuesday night marked the return of “Trump as candidate,” wrote Rather, “uncaged, unscripted, unabashed, and frankly unhinged. The crowd got to chant ‘lock her up’ to the name of Hillary Clinton and cheer a president who claims that he has accomplished more than any president at this point in a term (never mind reality). He was playing to the home crowd. But there is a much bigger world out there, no matter the picture Mr. Trump may wish to paint.”
Read the full post, embedded below: