The term “We Got Played” is currently trending on Twitter. And when one sees “We Got Played” as a top Twitter trend, with its inferences to an idiom often used by those who say they have been tricked or fooled, one must investigate exactly where the “We Got Played” terminology came from. Think of Rihanna’s “Love On the Brain” lyric, wherein she croons about growing “tired of being played like a violin,” and one would understand the “We Got Played” phrase.
Well, in this instance, the “We Got Played” wording can be traced to the article titled “Morehouse College President: We Got Played,” written by Michael Harriot, published on The Root on Thursday, March 2, at 8:20 p.m. Since that time, the “We Got Played” article has gone viral with more 80,400 views. The piece speaks about the recent meeting between President Donald Trump and leaders of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, on Monday, February 27.
With the “We Got Played” as a subtitle in the article, one might think Morehouse College president John Silvanus Wilson, Jr., actually said “We Got Played” somewhere in his statement about the meeting with President Trump. However, the words “We Got Played” cannot be found in the OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT: Statement on HBCU Presidents Visit to White House issued by Wilson — even if the “We Got Played” sentiment is there. To be fair, the article title is “Morehouse College President: We Got Played” and the “We Got Played” part is not written a direct quote in quotation marks.
Plus, the beginning of the article shows how tongue-in-cheek Harriot’s writing can be, with quips about Counselor to the President Kellyanne Conway putting her feet up on the couch, as seen in the above photo — a move that got lots of attention on social media. Michael joked that there’s an old African proverb that claims you shouldn’t trust anyone that lets other people put their feet on the couch.
What Wilson actually said can be read in full on the Morehouse College website via the above link, and in part below — with Wilson speaking about his two days in meetings at the White House and on Capitol Hill. Wilson claimed that whereas most of the 104 HBCU presidents attended the meeting with Mr. Trump, his high hopes for the meeting were dashed.
“Many had high hopes about this meeting. There was much advance chatter about it being ‘historic,’ and there were many signals from key Trump administration officials that they would surprise HBCUs with favorable treatment. Given my experience in the Obama administration, I knew this would require an extraordinary announcement. Why? Because I knew that President Obama had invested $3 billion more in HBCUs in his first six years than President Bush invested in his final six years. Therefore, since President Trump pledged to ‘do more for HBCUs than any other president has done before,’ we could have reasonably expected him to get started by announcing at least an additional $500 million to HBCUs…this year!”
The crux of Wilson’s argument and the “We Got Played” sentiment came from the above selection, along with claims that there would be increased funding to HBCUs, including Pell Grant and Title III funding increases. Tax breaks for those who donate to HBCUs were bandied about, but what exactly will come to fruition remains to be seen.
The “We Got Played” sentiment was reiterated when Secretary DeVos claimed that HBCUs were founded because African Americans weren’t happy with the college choices available when slavery days were over, wrote Wilson. However, Wilson made sure to note that blacks didn’t create HBCUs for that reason. HBCUs were created because blacks had no other choice, wrote Wilson.
To sum it up, Wilson called the meeting with Mr. Trump and others “a troubling beginning”– but what’s being passed around social media is “We Got Played.”
[Featured Image by Andrew Harnik/AP Images]