PRONUNCIATION: (wat-uh-BAUT-uhr-ee)

MEANING: noun: The practice of responding to an accusation by making a counter-accusation, real or imaginary, relevant or irrelevant.

ETYMOLOGY: From the response “What about ...?” to a criticism. Earliest documented use: 1974.

NOTES: The word was coined in 1974 in a story about the Northern Ireland conflict. It was widely employed by then USSR as a propaganda technique and is now often a favorite of Trump. It’s also known as whataboutism. See also tu quoque.

CHATABOUTERY - the (dying) art of conversation; sometimes used disparagingly

WHATABOUTERY! - purple prose describing an exciting boxing match

WHATABOOTERY - slogan promoting a school for kickers