Merriam-Webster continues to do their part to bring a bit of joy into the mess that is 2017. After declaring that their word of the year is “feminism,” the dictionary also released an illustrated list of the most looked-up words in 2017 and used a photo of Ivanka Trump to explain what one word meant: “complicit.”
Complicit was the second-most looked-up word of the year, driven by the current political climate as well as Saturday Night Live skits. Merriam-Webster defines the word as “helping to commit a crime or do wrong in some way.”
“The word has been used in connection with the Trump administration throughout the year: first, regarding whether members of Trump's administration were complicit in the firing of James Comey, and later whether they were complicit in Russian disinformation campaigns meant to disrupt the 2016 election. Other politicians have used the word in an effort to distance themselves from the Trump administration,” Merriam-Webster explains, going on to add that the word’s biggest spikes were tied to the President’s daughter, Ivanka Trump.
SNL aired a skit in March for a fragrance called “Complicit,” described as “The fragrance for the woman who could stop all this … but won’t.”
Gayle King later asked Ivanka point-blank whether she was “complicit” in the happenings of the White House, and she responded that she “didn’t know what it means to be ‘complicit.’”
Someone should direct the First Daughter to Merriam-Webster next time.