"What About Us" as written by and John Mcdaid Alecia B. Moore....
La da da da da, la da da da da
Da da da

We are searchlights, we can see in the dark
We are rockets, pointed up at the stars
We are billions of beautiful hearts
And you sold us down the river too far

What about us?
What about all the times you said you had the answers?
What about us?
What about all the broken happy ever afters?
What about us?
What about all the plans that ended in disaster?
What about love? What about trust?
What about us?

We are problems that want to be solved
We are children that need to be loved
We were willin', we came when you called
But, man, you fooled us, enough is enough, oh

What about us?
What about all the times you said you had the answers?
What about us?
What about all the broken happy ever afters?
Oh, what about us?
What about all the plans that ended in disaster?
Oh, what about love? What about trust?
What about us?

Oh, what about us?
What about all the plans that ended in disaster?
What about love? What about trust?
What about us?

Sticks and stones, they may break these bones
But then I'll be ready, are you ready?
It's the start of us, waking up, come on
Are you ready? I'll be ready
I don't want control, I want to let go
Are you ready? I'll be ready
'Cause now it's time to let them know
We are ready, what about us?

What about us?
What about all the times you said you had the answers?
So what about us?
What about all the broken happy ever afters?
Oh, what about us?
What about all the plans that ended in disaster?
Oh, what about love? What about trust?
What about us?

What about us?
What about us?
What about us?
What about us?
What about us?
What about us?


Lyrics submitted by Mellow_Harsher

"What About Us" as written by John Mcdaid Alecia B. Moore

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group, Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Spirit Music Group

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What About Us song meanings
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  • +3
    My InterpretationAlthough upon interview with the song writer (billboard.com/articles/columns/pop/7905034/…), he mentioned that the song does not specify anything on to whom the question "What about us?" is addressed, I believe this is directed towards a deity and/or to the people that represents that deity's authority.

    Looking at the first verse, it describes us humans full of potential and ambition. But the problem is that humans are lead into something they don't deserve. Maybe through misdirection of faith. This was amplified through the verse next to the first chorus:

    "We are children that need to be loved
    We were willin', we came when you called"

    At first glance, one might think that this means the adherents of faith that followed their leader or their deity but then was tricked as the next line says:

    "But man, you fooled us, enough is enough, oh"

    Furthermore, the chorus can imply that the deity was marketed to have all the answers to humanity's questions and hopes but are left unanswered.

    On the last verse before the last chorus, the writer calls for the people to stand up and break free from the ideas that were lead to them and still in this case, faith to something higher.

    To sum up, this song is all about questioning something higher (can be a deity) and calling for people to stand up and take action.
    Icarvson October 11, 2017   Link
  • +1
    My InterpretationI always thought it was about either Dr. Luke and his taking advantage of Kesha and other artists he works with on his label, or Donald Trump becoming president and how he fooled us into thinking his ways are right and our ways are wrong.
    seeingon October 17, 2017   Link
  • 0
    My InterpretationHi everyone,
    The lyrics to "What about us" are absolutely brilliant and beautiful. So I decided to produce a video about them, offering a thorough interpretation. You can find it here:
    youtube.com/…
    What do you think about it?
    YOLOEnglishon November 10, 2017   Link
  • 0
    My InterpretationI see this as a cry against anyone who betrays trust from a position of authority. Maybe a parent or something, or the whole society and the way in which it handles parenting. The first verse, it's all about how "we had potential but you sold us out"
    the second verse is something like "we needed your help and your guidance but you led us astray and we won't have it anymore"
    the chorus is like "what about the people you threw under the bus? You've betrayed us, you've led us into disaster, our trust is shattered, our love is shattered."
    the bridge seems like something of a call to revolution or a warning that one is coming. "I don't want control, I want to let go" is something like... "I don't want your influence over me anymore, I want to let go of the illusion of protection that provides, it's not like I'm taking over, more like I'm taking what's mine and then moving on".
    just my thoughts lol
    someweirdderpon December 27, 2017   Link
  • 0
    My InterpretationFirst off hearing the chorus on radio it felt like a breakup song about relationship gone bad "what about all the broken happy ever afters" - a fairytale princess & prince reference and wanting to let go. Similarly at first "may break these bones" sounded like a reference to broken heart or similar.

    Obviously there was much more to the lyrics, and other commentators have listened the song longer than few seconds on radio.

    "We came when you called" and "may break these bones" illustrates American soldiers volunteering to fly off to far away places for their president in illusion of being peace makers and liberators only to face angry locals going at them with no end. These weapons are pointing to the "stars" (= US states) and asking the question from the politicians and government of the states/stars "what about us"?

    "We are problems that want to be solved, We are children that need to be loved" can also describe soldiers who more often than not come from difficult background. From poverty, minorities, uneducated young men who believed their (politicians) lies and promises, ready to sacrifice their life for what they thought was their country. But it wasnt.

    Rich, white and educated rarely go to army and sacrifice their bones or life for the president who wants power and oil. When did you read rockenfeller, trump or koch boys get hit by a bomb in Iraq? Who sold them boy soldiers out? River too far.
    porkkanaon February 16, 2018   Link
  • 0
    My OpinionThis song is at least partly brilliant in its ambiguity, as a quick glance over the interpretations here on songmeanings will tell you. Politics, Religion, Military Service, The Recording Industry, Relationships, clearly people are getting a lot of different things out of it. And yeah, at its core it mostly seems to be about someone in a position of authority abusing their power.

    Personally though, I can't get past this as being a perfect anthem for Progressive younger-set Millennials, or whatever we're calling the new digital age kids who've grown up entirely in the age of the internet and social media and can hardly remember a president before Barack Obama. The kids who are currently entry-level in the workforce, or in college or high school, that one can't help constantly reading about. Sadly, that's not a compliment.

    The first verse is wonderfully aspirational: searchlights that see in the dark, rockets pointed at the stars, beautiful hearts- I take it as being about our wonderful individual potential, and that's great. Then the last line of the first verse takes us into the refrain, about being betrayed by those we trusted.

    Where the whole thing goes off the rails for me is verse two: "We are problems that want to be solved" Wait, what? I'm not a problem. My friends and family aren't problems. We're strong, independent, hard-working people. We're problem-solvers, not problems, and we certainly don't need or want anyone to "solve" us. "We are children that need to be loved" What? No, absolutely not. Of course everyone wants to be loved, but that doesn't make us children, nor do I appreciate anyone who thinks of us as children. We are the masters of our own destiny, not children waiting to be coddled and protected and cared for.

    After that we launch back into the betrayal, but suddenly the betrayal is starting to make a lot more sense. Because if you think of yourself as a problem for someone else to solve, or a child for someone else to love and care for, then you are absolutely setting yourself up to be sold down a river. And if you're thinking I'm reading too much specifically into those lines, hang on for the next verse.

    Verse three starts out very promising. "Sticks and stones they make break these bones but then I'll be ready, are you ready?" It actually sounds as if we've learned something. We failed to take responsibility for our own lives, we were betrayed, we suffered, but now we're stronger and starting to take responsibility for ourselves. Awesome! But no. Hang on a tick. "It's the start of us waking up" Well, better late than never. At least we're finally ready to take responsib... "I don't want control, I want to let go" What?! That's what got you in this position in the first place. Take control! Be the master of your own destiny.

    But alas, these are the young, digital-age Millennial Progressives. (The ones presently "waking up," the rest of us have been wide awake for a long time.) They believe in the power and goodness of government, they think the government should tell them where to live, should send them to school, clothe them, feed them, provide for their every need. They don't want to take control and be strong, independent people. They want to be children, they want to be solved, they want to be wards of an all-powerful state.

    Sadly, knowing just a touch of Pink's personal politics, I'm afraid this interpretation may be fairly accurate.

    Look, it's just one interpretation. Enjoy the song for whatever you hear in it. But despite my initial enjoyment, I can't hear it without being very, very sad for all those people who have indeed allowed themselves to be sold down a river too far.
    Counterclockwerkon February 22, 2018   Link
  • 0
    Song MeaningThe songwriter was afraid to comment on the song meaning because it might take away from what the song means to any individual listener. This is an obvious copout but I get it, the song can hacve a different meaning to different listeners. When I was leaving my girlfriend a few months ago she had me listen to this song, and it clearly meant something to her about "us" as in her and I.

    My former wife and I recently had been texting each other and she indicated that she wanted me to sing to her. I was pissed at the time and sent her the lyrics to Nickelback's "How You Remind Me," which she didn't take very well. fast forward a few days and I told her I was heading back to Nebraska, which my wife took to mean I was heading back to my former girlfriend. She sent me this song, Pink's "What About Us?" In that context, it sure as hell didn't have some BS political meaning. The end effect was it had me streaming in tears as I turned my bike the hell around.

    So the answer to me is, the song means whateever you want it to mean.
    ayebrobrololon August 07, 2018   Link

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