Is Fetterman’s stroke a legitimate issue?
For a long time after Brandon’s Installation, I got emails asking me to review his medical condition. My reply was that I had already done that, and it didn’t take a physician to tell you that he was not well. Those requests followed my foray into the medicine of politics with Hillary Clinton’s health difficulties. That reporting led to considerable upset in Democratic campaign circles, where it was supposedly a damaging bit of “fake news.” But I didn’t present it for the purpose of painting Clinton with a “sick” brush.
Numerous politicians with physical ailments have served with distinction. FDR and Max Cleland come readily to mind. These public servants did not suffer from mental disturbances unless you consider liberalism to be a mental disorder. FDR is reported to have had polio, and Senator Cleland was a multiple amputee after military service. But Hillary Clinton showed signs of Parkinson’s Disease, a malady with far more consequential mental impacts.
Assuming that the signs did in fact point to Parkinson’s Disease, her election would have put a person with severely impaired logic processing behind the Resolute Desk. That was a cost that America could ill afford. FDR, on the other hand, merely had difficulty with movement. His mind, to all accounts, was fully intact. And this is why we must look at John Fetterman. He has had a significant stroke.
Many people who suffer strokes can function at high levels. My father was one of them, right up until the final stroke that took his life. But even my dad had issues with emotional control, and in a major policy-making position such as the U.S. Senate, that’s not good. My father’s mind was affected, but only minimally.
Image: John Fetterman (edited) from YouTube screen grab. Cracks by eflon, CC BY 2.0.
Your mind is not a scientifically definable quantity. In fact, if we were able to explain how it worked, we would take away what makes us who we are. We would become, simply, the sum of our parts, no longer a person. We do know that parts of the brain are required for the mind to function. They are necessary, but not sufficient. It is that God-given je ne sais quoi that transforms three pounds of neurons into something dramatically more. We also know that certain injuries completely transform the human mind’s functioning. These brain traumas create defects in processing that markedly change people.
In Fetterman’s case, the stroke caused significant language issues. Because of his incomplete receptive aphasia (he has problems understanding spoken language), we can be certain the Wernicke’s area is involved. His similarly obvious incomplete expressive aphasia (he has trouble making sense when he speaks) indicates problems in the adjacent Broca’s area.
It is believed that Wernicke’s area comprehends language and chooses the correct words to use. This is then sent through the arcuate fasciculus to then arrive at Broca’s area to be articulated before language is produced.
In plain English, he has trouble “hearing” language and difficulty speaking. The debate with Dr. Oz made this painfully clear. Even with a teleprompter to allow him to read what was being said, he fumbled badly.
Let’s make one thing clear. I’m not talking about the usual Democrat difficulty with “getting their message out.” Every Democrat has that impairment because the Democrats don’t have a message worth presenting. This is an irrecoverable physical injury to parts of the brain that are essential to language skills.
A senator must have fluent language skills. If I tried to be a government official in Greece, I’d fail badly because it would all be Greek to me. (Even though I’ve studied biblical Greek.) That’s what Fetterman is facing. Every conversation, every piece of legislation, and every confrontation would be unintelligible gibberish. He would be utterly incapable of doing any of the essential tasks that fall to a senator. Gisele Fetterman, an unelected illegal alien immigrant (now citizen), would functionally be another Edith Wilson, making all the decisions. That cannot be permitted.
Pundits who argue that a candidate’s health is off-limits forget this. Some health problems are merely physical. Others have major mental impacts, and as I noted in my Hillary videos, we can’t afford public officials who are mentally impaired.
Just in case you haven’t noticed, just look at Joe Biden. We are all praying that America survives his incapacity.
Ted Noel MD is a retired Anesthesiologist/Intensivist who podcasts and posts on social media as DoctorTed and @vidzette. His DoctorTed podcasts are available on many podcast channels.