If character is destiny, as the ancient Greek philosopher Heraclitus had it, then Donald Trump’s character is sending us all a frighteningly clear message: As bad as you think things are right now, they will only get worse. Much worse.

Hold on, you say. Who are you to judge anyone’s character, much less that of the duly elected President of the United States? The American people have exercised their judgement and put Donald Trump in the White House. Claiming you can plumb the inner workings of his mind or personality and find them lacking is to engage in mere ad hominem attack. It’s cheap and easy and likely reflects a partisan bias.

Understood. If you don’t like a leader’s policies yet can’t counter them using facts, evidence and reason, just start slinging mud. If you don’t think Barack Obama is being tough enough on terrorists, for instance, don’t bother grappling with his killing of Osama bin Laden or his unleashing a hell-storm of drone strikes on bad guys. Instead, claim he founded ISIS. Not in a metaphorical way, mind you. No, insist he was actually a founding member of a group that, among other atrocities, kidnaps young girls for use as sex slaves.

Who would make such an outrageous claim? Donald Trump, that’s who.