Sunday Smack: What Will Trump’s “Deal” for Black Colleges Look Like?

Donald trump hbcus
The President with Omarosa Manigault.

Black college lovers who suffer from Trumpxiety may have plenty to say about this week’s Sunday SmackBuzzFeed News reported that the White House — through its public liaison leader Omarosa Manigault — is drafting an executive order concerning historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs).

During the same meeting where much of the media talked about how the President reanimated Frederick Douglass to kick off Black History Month, Trump supporter and Thurgood Marshall College Fund communications lead Paris Dennard told #45 about the need to support these institutions, “especially given how HBCUs fared under the [Obama] administration.”

Trump reportedly expressed genuine concern about the state of HBCUs:

“He was shocked and upset to learn what happened under the previous administration,” Dennard said.

Attendees told Trump that while Howard was receiving federal funds and doing fairly well, many others were struggling, with someone in the room linking the state of HBCUs to President Obama.

Trump asked what he needed to do, according to a source in the room. That’s when Manigault said she was working on getting an executive order on HBCUs on Trump’s desk.

The lack of executive order details in this instance didn’t stop me from musing about how the President constantly reminds us that he’s a Master of the Deal.

Deals seem to be his obsession. As if every problem in his lens has negotiable potential to become a better deal.

This may explain why Trump has applied his focused deal hammer to a wide range of nails including NAFTA, TPP, corporate outsourcing, that wall, energy and even Iran’s legal nuclear program.

Do the current challenges facing HBCUs qualify them for a Trump deal?

Debating the Obama approach to HBCUs — which, for example, placed more emphasis on winning federal government grant proposals as opposed to aid packages, but provided relatively limited preparations for HBCUs to compete with institutions like Harvard for these grants — makes for a worthwhile debate.

I’m also sure some of you would want to debate about Obama’s initial funding cuts to HBCUs as well as the observations of other Black politicians about Obama’s apparent failure to understand the value HBCUs deliver to society.

But we’re now living in the Age of Trump, so my Sunday Smack will be different:

What in the world would be in a Trump Executive order for HBCUs?

Yes, referencing Obama’s relationship with HBCUs is fair game as long as you answer the original question …

song currently stuck in my head: “it’s your life” – brigette mcwilliams

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