Who would have guessed we’d one day reach a point in life where everyone’s favorite slinger of shade would be…a dictionary?
And yet: here we are.
Those behind the social presence of Merriam-Webster, were at it again on Wednesday, responding to a CBS interview in which Ivanka Trump said/confessed/uttered what should now be an immortalized phrase: “I don’t know what it means to be complicit.“
In the interview on Tuesday, CBS’s Gayle King addressed past articles and other media she’s seen that refer to Trump and her husband Jared as complicit—a word that Merriam-Webster officially defines as, “helping to commit a crime or do wrong in some way.”
When asked what she thought about the accusation, Trump initially responded in a very round-about way, almost as though she were confused about the actual definition of the word:
“If being complicit is wanting to be a force for good and to make a positive impact, then I’m complicit,” she said.
“I don’t know that the critics who may say that of me, if they found themselves in this very unique and unprecedented situation that I am now in, would do any differently than I’m doing,” she went on. “So I hope to make a positive impact. I don’t know what it means to be—complicit—but…but, you know, I hope time will prove that I have done a good job and much more importantly, that my father’s administration is the success that I know it will be.”
While it appeared Trump wrapped up her response by implying she either
(A) Truly didn’t understand the meaning of the word, or
(B) Didn’t know what it meant to be involved in complicit actions
…where there’s even the faintest hint of uncertainty surrounding a word, Merriam-Webster isn’t far behind.
On Wednesday morning, the dictionary’s Twitter account shared that the word “complicit” was its #1 lookup following Trump’s interview, along with an article from March, which referenced another spike in searches.
Back in March, an SNL sketch starring Scarlett Johansson as Ivanka named a perfume “Complicit,” with a tagline, “She’s beautiful … she’s powerful … she’s … complicit.”
Twitter users followed Merriam-Webster’s lead and reacted to Trump’s latest comments with some jokes and general concern, of course.
After seeing Ivanka say “I don’t know what complicit means,” I think America is ready to give Tiffany a try. She couldn’t do worse.
— Ken Fitzgerald (@loudlong) April 5, 2017
Somebody get Ivanka Trump a dictionary. She needs the definition of complicit.
— Jacquie Hamilton (@HamiltonJacquie) April 5, 2017
And naturally, Merriam-Webster — who has also called out the Trump administration before, including Kellyanne Conway‘s “alternative facts, the recent healthcare decision saga, and Trump’s general language — was applauded for its service.