Dr. Ben Carson defended Republican candidate Donald Trump's comments on post traumatic stress disorder, saying he didn't mean to imply that solders suffering from PTSD aren't strong enough, "he just didn't explain it correctly."
"When you talk about the mental health problems, when people come back from war and combat — and they see things that maybe a lot of the folks in this room have seen many times over and you're strong and you can handle it, but a lot of people can't handle it," Trump said Monday after addressing veterans in Herndon, Va., according to NBC News. "And they see horror stories. They see events that you couldn't see in a movie. Nobody would believe it."
Carson appeared on MSNBC Tuesday to suggest that Trump must learn how to act in a politically correct environment.
"Well, you know, in a politically correct atmosphere in which we exist, you are never supposed to say that somebody's weak, particularly a vulnerable group," Carson said. "He needs to learn that lesson, I guess, if he's gonna function well in a politically correct atmosphere."
The retired doctor employed a medical analogy to explain what Trump meant to say.
"But basically what he's saying is that people are exposed — a large number of people are exposed to something, but only some of them are affected. It's very much like when you're in an environment where there's a virus going around," he said. "Some people have strong immunity, some people have less strong immunity, and some people are affected by it and some people are not.
"The ones who are affected by it are not inferior individuals by any stretch of the imagination," he added. "It's just that their system did not withstand it. That's what he's saying. He just didn't explain it correctly."
Carson then said that Trump thinks veterans fighting mental health problems should seek help, and acknowledges that the help they receive now is "woefully inadequate."
"And we really have to address what's going on with all of the veterans," Carson said. "PTSD is a significant problem. Traumatic brain injury is a significant problem, and we have simply ignored it and we need to deal with it in a serious manner."
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