Ivanka Trump tweets ‘fake’ proverb sparking debate in China

Care to explain

Ivanka Trump took to Twitter to express support for her father, Donald Trump, prior to his meeting with DPRK leader Kim Jong-un; however, her choice of wording left many perplexed.

According to the New York Times, Ivanka Trump's tweet also sparked a widespread discussion on Weibo among baffled Chinese netizens who suggested genuine Chinese sayings which might convey a similar meaning to it.

Pinning the tweet to the top of her page, she wrote: 'Those who say it cannot be done, should not interrupt those doing it.' - Chinese Proverb'.

Ivanka is idolized by many people in China, where she is referred to by the Chinese characters 伊万卡 - pronounced "Yi Wan Ka" - and even described as a "goddess".

Another said: "It makes sense, but I still don't know which proverb it is".

Of course, Ms Trump is no stranger to Twitter controversies.

Some guessed that Trump referenced the quote "A true gentleman should keep silent while watching a chess game".

But it was reportedly panned on China's social network, Weibo, and may have actually been an early 20th-century saying.

The quote also has been attributed to Irish author George Bernard Shaw.

She quoted the tweet as having been said by Confucious, famous Chinese editor, philosopher, and politician when in reality the historical figure never had said anything remotely like that.

Upon further investigation, however, this quote doesn't actually appear to be a Chinese proverb at all.

Ivanka celebrated her father's landmark meeting with the leader of North Korea, after decades of hostilities between the two countries by quoting what she called a Chinese proverb.

"That definitely is a falsely attributed proverb", Larry Herzberg, the director of Asian studies at Calvin College and a professor of Chinese language, told ABC News.

"But why are Trump WH (White House) aides giving our proverbs to China, increasing our proverb deficit?" he quipped.

Ivanka and her family enjoy a huge fan following in China.

"And Twitter users in the know were quick to point out the misattribution".

It's not the first time Ivanka Trump has given China credit for an adage.

US President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping, with Ivanka Trump at far left, at dinner at Mar-a-Lago previous year.



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