Daily Drip

Ivanka Trump Tweets “Chinese Proverb”, Confuses Chinese Netizens


With the eyes of the world on Singapore this week, Ivanka Trump took to Twitter to quote some ancient Chinese wisdom in support of her father:

Lovely. Slight problem though: no one in China seems to know which proverb she’s referring to.

Ivanka is actually fairly popular in China, thanks to her perceived businesswoman savvy and having a kid who is wheeled out to sing in Mandarin when the occasion demands. Naturally, her tweeting out a “Chinese proverb” has garnered plenty of attention in the country and #Ivanka Chinese Proverb# has attracted hundreds of thousands of views on Sina Weibo in the past 24 hours.

That’s not a “we totally get you’re saying” emoji

Chinese netizens have been offering up both genuine attempts at re-translation and, naturally, plenty of joke responses. One thing seems to be uniting them all however: a pervading sense of WTF?

Some of the top-rated comments on Weibo so far include user Haierkate, attempting to pass off some modern-day internet slang as ancient wisdom:

U can u up,no can no BB。”[doge]

and Fafeng de Huli looking to history and a famed Chinese writer and thinker for inspiration:

‘You can’t just say that something is a Chinese proverb simply because it sounds a bit Chinese’ – Lu Xun

Thankfully, back on Twitter, so often a sanctuary of positive energy and impeccable manners, everyone has responded politely and without mocking Ms Trump in the slightest. A couple of choice examples:

And then there’s this take from Michael Li:

Usually around this time of year, netizens in China are poring over questions from the gaokao college entrance exams, but it seems Ivanka’s tweet might be even more of a head scratcher right now.

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RADII (rā'dē-ī') is an independent platform of artists, writers and creators dedicated to sharing vibrant stories from the rarely explored sides of new China.
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