Some of Trump’s aides and enablers have been excusing Trump’s threats by insisting he was only joking.
Here’s a tweet I saw from an anonymous source:
He’s “just joking” when he says he’ll pardon aides for illegal acts, just like he kids about staying past his term
Trump himself regularly insists he was only joking when he’s called out about some of his threats to do things that are illegal, immoral, or cruel. His flying monkeys back him up on this and then blame our side of having “Trump Derangement Syndrome” when we don’t fall for these lies. This is gaslighting.
But Trump is a malignant narcissist, and malignant narcissists have no sense of humor. They do not joke, and therefore Trump does not joke. The only kind of “jokes” sociopaths and malignant narcissists understand are mocking or making fun of the weaker and more vulnerable. Unless you’re a fellow narcissist or sociopath, you will not find these kinds of “jokes” funny, because punching down to hurt the weak and vulnerable is never funny. That’s why people with a conscience were horrified when Trump openly mocked a disabled reporter during his presidential campaign. That one action should have ended his campaign on the spot, but that did not happen.
Going back to the “I was only joking” excuse malignant narcissists use to gaslight and mislead their marks (and make no mistake, we are all marks to this president), this is a very common strategy abusers use to control you and get away with their abuse, because it works. I can’t tell you how many times my own abusers used this on me, and how many times I have heard other victims of narcissistic abuse relate they have heard “I was only joking” from their abusers too.
Another thing abusers do, besides gaslight you by insisting they were joking when they really weren’t, is they turn the blame back on you (blameshifting). In other words, after telling you they were only joking, they will accuse YOU of having no sense of humor, being too sensitive, or too stupid to get their jokes, accusing you of having “Trump Derangement Syndrome” and the like. This is gaslighting because it makes you begin to doubt your own reality and your own experience of what really happened. You begin to wonder if in fact, you are too sensitive, or too stupid to get a joke, or whatever character flaw the narcissist has accused you of.
The fact we have a president who gaslights us daily and throws out threatening trial balloons that basically announce what his future plans are, and then covers up his cruelty by saying (or having his flying monkeys say) he was “only joking” should concern all of us. We are all victims of this abuser.