This is quite possibly one of the most New York stories ever.
One week after CNN‘s Chris Cuomo went ballistic on an alleged right-wing provocateur who approached him and called him “Fredo”, his brother Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) has come to his defense.
The New York Daily News reports:
Gov. Cuomo came out swinging in defense of his TV host brother Chris Cuomo who got embroiled in a nasty confrontation with a stranger who called him “Fredo.”
The governor insisted he’s never even watched The Godfather, where the supposed slur originates, from start to finish and said their famous dad refused to watch the film on principle.
“Italian Americans are not Mafia,” Andrew Cuomo told WAMC radio. “Don’t you dare liken my family to the family you saw in The Godfather or the The Sopranos.”
Andrew Cuomo said bigotry and slurs aimed at Italians [are] as dangerous as xenophobia and anti-Semitism, citing the mass shootings in El Paso and at a Pittsburgh synagogue last year.
“It’s all ugliness,” he said.
Along with “Fredo,” which refers to a thick-headed character in the famed mafia flick, Andrew Cuomo railed against the use of other anti-Italian insults, like “wop” and “dago.”
You can listen to the interview segment Gov. Cuomo did on WAMC here.
Here’s a recap of what happened during the tense exchange on Shelter Island last week between Cuomo and an unidentified man, courtesy of the New York Post:
“Punk-ass bitches from the right call me ‘Fredo.’ My name is Chris Cuomo, I’m an anchor on CNN,” the newsman says in the video, which was shared on Twitter Monday evening.
“Fredo is from ‘The Godfather,’ he was a weak brother and the use of it to an Italian is disparaging,” he continues.
The 49-year-old anchor tells the man that the name “Fredo” is as offensive to Italian Americans as the N-word is to African Americans.
“Don’t f–king insult me like that,” the Queens native fumes. “You call me ‘Fredo,’ it’s like I call you punk bitch, you like that?”
The man in the video insists that he believed the anchor’s real name was Fredo.
But Cuomo, a dad of three, doesn’t buy it.
“You did not think that … stand up like a man,” he seethes. “Own what you said.”
The situation then escalates, with Cuomo telling the man: “I’ll f–king throw you down these stairs like a f–king punk … you’re gonna call me Fredo, take a f–king swing? I’ll f–king wreck your s–t.”
Because a mere recap doesn’t do the video itself justice of what went down, watch it below:
The “PrimeTime” anchor later expressed regret over his behavior but did not apologize:
Appreciate all the support but – truth is I should be better than the guys baiting me. This happens all the time these days. Often in front of my family. But there is a lesson: no need to add to the ugliness; I should be better than what I oppose.
— Christopher C. Cuomo (@ChrisCuomo) August 13, 2019
Gov. Cuomo also stated during his Monday interview that his late father, former Gov. Mario Cuomo, “would not watch” the “Godfather” movie. “My father wouldn’t watch the movie because it was anti-Italian.”
Speaking of NBC News, they win the day with this clever take on the governor’s interview:
— Adam Edelman (@abedelman) August 19, 2019
— Based in North Carolina, Sister Toldjah is a former liberal and a 15+ year veteran of blogging with an emphasis on media bias, social issues, and the culture wars. Read her Red State archives here. Connect with her on Twitter. –