Trump thinks he's still the star of a reality TV show as coronavirus death toll continues to mount: op-ed
President Donald Trump speaks during a press conference at the White House. (AFP / Roberto SCHMIDT)

This Sunday, President Trump fired off a series of tweets where he bragged about the "ratings hit" of his coronavirus briefings --  a series of tweets that one columnist described as an example of "complete amorality" as doctors, nurses, and other public servants put their lives on the line battling the spiraling pandemic. Writing for The Week this Monday, Joel Mathis contends that as the country reels from being turned upside down, Trump is "looking into a mirror, asking it to assure him that he is the fairest of them all."

"Does President Trump think he is still the star of a reality TV show?" he asks.

According to Mathis, Trump's narcissism is only part of the problem. The other part is that he lacks any sense of history.

"The president's ignorance about America's past — and his disinclination to learn what he doesn't know — is well-documented,"Mathis writes. "The result is that he is constantly surprised by the routine challenges that come with the nation's top job. Over the last few years, he has asserted that "nobody knew" how complicated health-care politics could be, or that Abraham Lincoln was a Republican, or that flu is a deadly disease. He is wrong of course. Lots of people knew these things."

Mathis writes that Trump's lack of understanding when it comes to history doesn't just prevent him from learning from the past. It also denies him the ability to recognize that history will judge him for how he deals with the situation at hand.  "His tweets bragging about his TV ratings in the midst of a pandemic only add to the pile of evidence that this president lives in the perpetual now, unwilling or unable to take a long- or medium-term view of the consequences of his actions."

Read his full op-ed over at The Week.