Wineke: Trump dementia syndrome is on trial

Wineke: Trump dementia syndrome is on trial
Copyright 2018 CNN

The parlor game of the week seems to be a debate about whether President Donald Trump has dementia.

If I understand the argument correctly, liberals are arguing that the president repeats himself too frequently and makes all sorts of odd claims on Twitter. The conservative retort is that we knew he was weird when we elected him.

I doubt we’re really going to resolve this question soon. In fact, I’m not sure that having dementia would qualify as an impeachable offense.

But one image of the president does give me pause.

Last June, we all saw pictures of Trump driving across a putting green at his New Jersey golf course. He just drove right over it.

I thought at the time, “I would be in big trouble if I did that.” Then I thought, “I would never do that.” And, finally, I thought, “No one would ever do that.”

For those of you who aren’t golfers, a putting green is the most perfectly manicured part of a golf course. The condition of the green has a big impact on whether the golfer has a low score or a not-so-low score. If your putt is off by a half-inch, your golf ball keeps on rolling.

You do not drive a golf cart over a putting green. In fact, most golf courses won’t let you drive a golf cart anywhere near the green. The green is the closest thing to a sacred space on the course.

At the time, Trump critics just said the president showed his arrogance by doing so. Others pointed out that, since Trump owns the golf course, he can do what he wishes.

But that argument is nonsense. If you spend millions of dollars building a championship golf course and, then, disrupt the putting green? No one would do that.

No one would do that unless his mind had ceased to function in any normal way.

Some of the reports at the time alleged that Trump has driven over the greens on previous occasions. For all I know, he may have driven over greens since. You don’t see many photos of the president playing golf anymore. There seems to be part of his judgment that is impaired when it comes to golf.

But driving over a putting green is the sort of thing one might expect a person with dementia to do, though if you’re not president and you don’t own the course, your partner would stop you before you could cause harm.

All I know is that I have played golf for more than 50 years and I have never seen anyone drive a golf cart across a green.

I bet Oprah wouldn’t do that.