Patterico's Pontifications

8/13/2019

CNN’s Chris Cuomo Comes Undone: “Fredo” Is N-word for Italians

Filed under: General — Dana @ 6:00 pm



[guest post by Dana]

Sometimes real life is so outrageous that it is beyond parody. For a prime example of this, consider the temper tantrum CNN’s Chris Cuomo’s threw yesterday when a man referred to him as “Fredo”. Cuomo shouted at him that “Fredo” is the N-word for Italians. On exactly which planet, he didn’t say:

“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 that spread quickly on social media.

Cuomo says that Fredo is an insult for Italians, much like how the N-word is for African Americans.

“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,” railed Cuomo in the clip, purportedly filmed Sunday on Shelter Island. “I’ll f–king wreck your s–t.” He dropped more than 20 F-bombs ion the rant.

CNN is supporting Cuomo, in spite of his outburst:

“Chris Cuomo defended himself when he was verbally attacked with the use of an ethnic slur in an orchestrated setup,” CNN spokesman Matt Dornic said in a statement on Twitter. “We completely support him.”

Team Trump says that “Fredo” is not an ethnic slur:

“The default response from media or Democrats to any criticism is to label it racist or a ‘slur,’ ” said Tim Murtaugh, director of communications for the Trump campaign. ”The term ‘Fredo’ is commonplace, used without pause by Cuomo himself and by guests on his own show.”

Here is Chris Cuomo referring to himself as “Fredo” during a radio interview:

Cuomo was interviewed by Curtis Sliwa on his AM 970 radio show in January 2010 about whether his brother Andrew might seek the Democratic nomination for governor.
Sliwa said he dubbed the Cuomo family “la Cuomo Nostra.”

“There is a group of people — politicos — who always hint they might run, but not necessarily plunge all the way, and they are members of la Cuomo.”

“Who am I, then, Fredo?” Cuomo asked in response.

“Yes, exactly,” Sliwa said. “So you better be careful that your brother Andrew doesn’t kiss you on both cheeks and then all of a sudden they take you out on the middle of the lake and where’s Chris?”

“He kisses me plenty because he’s a great big brother,” Cuomo said.

And of course, Trump couldn’t refrain from pouncing as well because he loves any opportunity to chew up anyone associated with CNN:

“I think that what Chris Cuomo did was horrible,” Trump told reporters Tuesday, dismissing a question on whether the word was racially insensitive. “His language was horrible. He looked like a total, out-of-control animal. He lost it.”

The president added: “Frankly, I don’t think anybody should defend him because he spews lies every night.”

Duly noted, Mr. President: Don’t defend those who spew lies… [Ed. My god, my eyes just rolled so hard at this, I’m looking out the back side of my noggin now!]

Anyway, we all know that when Trump doesn’t use a modicum of self-restraint or discipline, and starts spouting off, he invariably ends up giving the opposition a lot to work with. Well Cuomo did the same thing with his outburst when he unwittingly provided the Trump 2020 campaign with a clever marketing idea:

President Trump’s 2020 campaign wasted no time Tuesday in selling “Fredo Unhinged” T-shirts to piggyback on the controversy over CNN anchor Chris Cuomo’s unhinged viral video rant.

For $34, Trump supporters can get a T-shirt with unflattering screen grabs of the host from the video where he rages against a man who called the anchor “Fredo.”

“CNN’s Chris Cuomo is Fredo!” the Trump campaign shop says of the “limited edition” T-shirt that went live at 3:45 p.m. Tuesday.

“The truth hurts. He totally lost it. Help us annoy Chris Cuomo and buy your ‘Fredo Unhinged Tee’ now!”

Untitled

Cuomo spoke about the altercation with the man today:

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.

P.S. I’m reading that a number of public figures on the Right are defending Cuomo and don’t think he should be fired for his outburst. Whether he’s fired or not is up to CNN, but I won’t defend or excuse his behavior because, at the end of the day, he could have just turned around and walked away without threatening the man. But he chose not to do that.

(Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.)

–Dana

63 Responses to “CNN’s Chris Cuomo Comes Undone: “Fredo” Is N-word for Italians”

  1. Omg, these people are insane.

    Dana (fdf131)

  2. Cuomo acted like that in front of his own daughter… unhinged. Typical leftist.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  3. Urban Dictionary
    Fredo

    1) the dumbest/weakest son/brother or member of a group
    2) banging two cocktail waitresses at the same time
    __ _

    Dana – “he could have just turned around and walked away without threatening the man.”

    Very similar to the comment made by Cuomo on Nicholas Sandmann.

    And CNN has referred to Trump as Fredo numerous times.
    _

    Also turns out Cuomo referred to himself as Fredo in the past:

    “Cuomo was interviewed by Curtis Sliwa on his AM 970 radio show in January 2010 about whether his brother Andrew might seek the Democratic nomination for governor.
    Sliwa said he dubbed the Cuomo family “la Cuomo Nostra.”

    “There is a group of people — politicos — who always hint they might run, but not necessarily plunge all the way, and they are members of la Cuomo.”

    Who am I, then, Fredo?” Cuomo asked in response.
    __ _

    He’s getting a dazzling example of the Streisand Effect.
    .

    harkin (6ddbda)

  4. What is he? 12? I have student who deal with name calling in a more mature manner.

    Nic (896fdf)

  5. He doesn’t like Fredo Cuomo, how about Gamecock Naples?

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  6. Again the Left doesn’t live up to its own rules: where is the civility?

    Dana (fdf131)

  7. Well ana navarro the rotund latina has yelled ‘fredo’ loudly at trump as has rick wilson, although its hard to tell because he had a squirrel in his mouth, at the time

    Narciso (55c8b7)

  8. Blowing a squirrel? Totally Bulwark!

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  9. No its more of a crunching, the alien nation reference is intended.

    Narciso (55c8b7)

  10. No, he should not be fired. He should not even be chided. Maybe mocked a little for dealing the Italophobia card.

    I didn’t see the video and have no plans to. Was the guy who taunted him of the same stripe as the clod who taunted Ted Cruz in Indiana? Raise your hand if you think that maybe Ted should have “lost his sh!t” a little in that situation. It’s the only language Limbaugh dancers understand.

    nk (dbc370)

  11. This is a television issue: he’s a morning man; never was prime time anchor material.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  12. Cuomo was very aggressive, nk. The profanity wasn’t the problem, it was the escalating hate Cuomo spewed. While surrounded by his security.

    Dana (fdf131)

  13. If it sandmann hadnt been sandbagged, if that meme guy hadnt been doxxed, and a hundred other incidents i might say bygones be bygones.

    Narciso (55c8b7)

  14. And CNN has referred to Trump as Fredo numerous times

    I thought Fredo was supposed to be Donald Jr. Or maybe Eric.

    But the general point is absolutely true…more than one CNN guest has referred to one of the Trumps that way. And not just CNN…MSNBC as well.

    Kishnevi (db47fb)

  15. Perhaps the guy who agitated him is just a racist punk.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  16. The profanity wasn’t the problem, it was the escalating hate Cuomo spewed.

    That’s a staple in Coppola and Scorsese gangster pictures, and for good reason, they know the character of their characters. Fredos need to work themselves up into a frenzy — build up adrenaline — before they can mix it up.

    nk (dbc370)

  17. BTW, in Greek, macaronas, pl. macaronades, is the n-word for Italians. Yes, not only do we call them macaronis, but we also made fun of the feathers on Mussolini’s hat.

    nk (dbc370)

  18. I watched the video again, and i don’t think the man who referred to Cuomo as “Fredo” was the least bit aggressive. He didn’t fight back, he didn’t seem to want to fight at all. It was a dumb thing to say but how was he at fault more than just being a bit of a jerk? So, if Cuomo reacted as aggressively as he did over something rather insignificant, I can’t imagine how he would react if something that was truly awful was said to him.

    Dana (fdf131)

  19. I just went to five websites on Italian insults, and “Fredo” was not listed on any of them. I realize that’s not exhaustive but I’m wondering exactly where Cuomo has heard that used as an insult (especially given that he’s used it on himself).

    Dana (fdf131)

  20. Since you’re an expert on etymology, nk, I’ve always wondered:

    Are “cretin” and “Cretan” cognates, or just homophones?

    Dave (1bb933)

  21. Not even homophones in Greek. Cretin is from κρετινος, with epsilon which sounds like “eh” (as in bet) and transliterates into “kretinos” in the Latin alphabet; while Cretan is Κρητικος with eta which sounds like the short “i” (as in bit) but for which there is no Latin letter, so the Romans transliterated it as “Creticus”, as in Marcus Antonius Creticus, the famous Mark Anthony’s father, and from there it was Anglicized to Cretan.

    nk (dbc370)

  22. And I am not an expert on etymology. But I am correct on this.

    nk (dbc370)

  23. 18 – “I watched the video again, and i don’t think the man who referred to Cuomo as “Fredo” was the least bit aggressive. He didn’t fight back, he didn’t seem to want to fight at all. It was a dumb thing to say but how was he at fault more than just being a bit of a jerk?”

    The guy even reportedly said that all he did was ask to take a photo with him, and that he did not accost him at all.

    I also see no reason for CC to be punished other than the self-inflicted penalty of being called Fredo for the rest of his life.

    harkin (58d012)

  24. This the guy after all who said Antifa were equal to the troops on Omaha Beach.

    harkin (58d012)

  25. I think it’s the Mafia association that CC means is like the N-word, not the name Fredo by itself.

    Bill Clinton apologized to Mario Cuomo for saying nothing on he tape when ennifer Flowers said something about Mario Cuomo and Mafia. That didn’t stop him from trying to claim the tape was doctored, and I think maybe hiring Anthony Pellicano to say it, like anybody had this capability in 1992 outside of Hollywood maybe. (cf the movie Forrest Gump)

    They don’t even now in a way that’s not detectable.

    Sammy Finkelman (324ec1)

  26. Rush Limbaugh calls Andrew Cuomo’s younger brotehr Fredo Cuomo so often and never refers to him any other way that this man thought that was his name. just like 28 years ago some people probably thought that David Dinkins had attained the rank of general in the Marine reserves.

    David Dinkins never complained about the promotion, though, to the best of my knowledge.

    Rush Limbagh used to play a Car-54 theme song parody that went in part:

    “General David Dinkins, where are you?”

    Sammy Finkelman (324ec1)

  27. Fredo was lucky to be surrounded by his adult babysitters. Too bad Don Lemon couldn’t keep his hand out of his pants. Now he is being sued for sticking his crotch rubbed hand in a guys face. Gotta love CNN.

    mg (8cbc69)

  28. Rush Limbagh’s explanation of why he ave him that name:

    https://www.rushlimbaugh.com/daily/2019/08/13/fredo-can-dish-it-out-but-he-cant-take-it

    …it was March 21st, 2016, when Fredo was doing the morning show on CNN with Alisyn Camerota, and she said, Fredo — (laughing) — I don’t believe this — Fredo, “we can’t help but notice your culturally appropriate garb that you’re wearing. Tell us the history of your shirt, will you?” And here’s Fredo’s answer.

    CUOMO: My guayabera? This shirt belonged to my father. It was given to him by Fidel Castro. It marked conversations going on decades ago that were the same as those today. The concern was the freedom of the people. What is the point of this communist regime if it is not to truly make everyone equal, not at the lowest level —

    RUSH: Stop the tape! That’s when I started calling him Fredo. We went back and looked. My first documented reference to Chris Cuomo as Fredo was May 19th, 2017. This clip is March 21st, 2016, where he says… here, play it again.

    ….What is the point of this communist regime if it is not to truly make everyone equal, not at the lowest level, not by demoralizing everyone, but lifting everyone up. My father, generations of politicians have been fighting this. So I wear this shirt as a reminder of that.

    RUSH: The guy doesn’t even know what communism is so we have to excuse him for thinking that Fredo is a racial slur…

    It sounds like that Rush Limbaugh thought it incredibly stupid to think that the Communists were trying to help people.

    Sammy Finkelman (324ec1)

  29. Cuomo didn’t react this way because he was called Fredo, he was insanely pissed off because the dude was a Trump supporter.

    mg (8cbc69)

  30. Too bad Don Lemon couldn’t keep his hand out of his pants. Now he is being sued for sticking his crotch rubbed hand in a guys face. Gotta love CNN.

    You can find an ambulance-chasing shyster to call anything “sexual assault” these days.

    nk (dbc370)

  31. I feel like he “pounced”, to use a news word, on who he thought was a right-wing hater. He could cuss, threaten, and impress everybody, including his family. He yelled at a Trumpster! How sad is that?

    Patricia (3363ec)

  32. Actually, it was something Fredo himself would do.

    Loud, vulgar, ineffectual.

    Sad.

    Patricia (3363ec)

  33. nk (dbc370) — 8/13/2019 @ 8:17 pm

    Talk wordy to me!

    Dave (1bb933)

  34. Si tacuisses, philologus mansisses.

    nk (dbc370)

  35. Lemon seems to be covered in shyster.

    mg (8cbc69)

  36. Darn, I meant to italicize “pounced”.

    Fredo: incompetent and dumb. No more, no less. Own it, Cuomo.

    Dana (fdf131)

  37. Hard to believe Cuomo didn’t mention the Holocaust in his Trump hated rant.

    mg (8cbc69)

  38. Italians disagree with Cuomo:

    uesday on Chris Cuomo’s claim that “Fredo” is an ethnic slur — and while they said it’s insulting, the agreement was that anyone who likens it to the N-word is stunad.

    “If anything, when we call somebody ‘Fredo’ it’s like [to say they’re] stupid,” said a worker at Bensonhurst bakery Villabate Alba, who gave her name as Angela. “If somebody were to call me ‘Fredo,’ I would be like, ‘OK, you too.’ … Not like the N-word. That’s another level.”

    […]

    “Fredo means a backstabber, a person who went against his own kind. He went against his brother,” said Sergio Conte, 54. “If I was black and somebody called me the N-word, I would flip out. I’d be in anger.”

    This made me laugh:

    One mob associate told The Post, “That sounds like the rant of a 20-year-old hothead, not somebody who’s a professional and has his own family … It almost sounds like this guy hit a raw nerve.”

    Dana (fdf131)

  39. Cuomo overreacted but I’m not seeing the difference between a Trumpalista insulting a CNN guy in front of his family at a bar and an SJW screaming at McConnell in front of his family in a restaurant. Manners, people.

    Paul Montagu (a2342d)

  40. Paul,

    If you don’t see the difference between them, that’s your call and I appreciate you telling us all how you feel.

    NJRob (4d595c)

  41. If you don’t see the difference between them, that’s your call and I appreciate you telling us all how you feel.

    Sure. It’s reminiscent of that episode between Tucker Carlson and a left-wing loony tune. It shouldn’t be hard to have a minimal level of civility and not be the a$$hole who walks up to a public figure and insults him to his face, regardless of that person’s politics.

    Paul Montagu (a2342d)

  42. Sean Hannity, of all people, probably because he’s been there and felt like clocking his heckler.

    “I say good for @ChrisCuomo,” Fox News’ Sean Hannity tweeted on Monday night. “He’s out with his 9 year old daughter, and his wife, and this guy is being a jackass in front of his family. Imho Chris Cuomo has zero to apologize for. He deserves the apology.”

    C’mon, folks, manners.

    Paul Montagu (a2342d)

  43. A 82 year old Italian neighbor called Cuomo a ” chooch”. I asker her what that meant, and she said – A chooch is a person who gets locked in a grocery store at night and is found starved to death in the morning.

    mg (8cbc69)

  44. He’s a pendejo.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  45. These are the same young hotheads who came up with “Vote for Cuomo, not the Homo” for their dad when he ran against Ed Koch for mayor.

    urbanleftbehind (637c12)

  46. “He’s out with his 9 year old daughter, and his wife, and this guy is being a jackass in front of his family.”

    So the correct response is to drop 20+ F-bombs on his family’s delicate ears?

    Dave (1bb933)

  47. However you feel about Fredo’s rant, you can see why his brother, Governor Goombah, doesn’t want the people of New York to have guns. How would Florida’s “stand your ground” law apply here, you think? Me, I can see how the Limbaugh dancer might have had a reasonable apprehension that he would be thrown down the stairs and was forced to take preemptive action.

    I’ve said it before. Goombahs don’t want you to have guns so you won’t be able to defend yourself when they muscle you.

    nk (dbc370)

  48. It’s the hot-blooded, Mediterranean syndrome. All reason and self-control falls by the wayside and emotions rule. As their gods knew, they are as children.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  49. So the correct response is to drop 20+ F-bombs on his family’s delicate ears?

    Is it correct to for a guy to walk up to him and his family in a bar and insult him to his face? Yeah, Cuomo overreacted, but it wouldn’t have happened in the first place if that guy wasn’t being a dick. Is this what the GOP has become? The Party of A$$holes?

    Paul Montagu (a2342d)

  50. A simple “I’m out with my family, please don’t bother me” would’ve garnered sympathy.

    It’s amusing that someone would hold Sean Hannity up as even-keeled and an example of virtue given the denunciations he’s normally subjected to around here.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  51. 49. You are defending Chris Cuomo. SMDH

    Gryph (08c844)

  52. You are defending Chris Cuomo. SMDH

    Criticism of Party A ≠ Defense of Party B.

    Paul Montagu (a2342d)

  53. @45. That was only Andrew Cuomo (if it was him.)

    Chris Cuomo was only 7 years old in 1977. His brother is about a dozen years older than him.

    Sammy Finkelman (324ec1)

  54. 52. Okay. So maybe a better thing to point out would be “nobody is covering themselves in glory.” The assumption of “defense of party B” is reasonable (if wrong) given the tack you are taking here.

    Gryph (08c844)

  55. The assumption of “defense of party B” is reasonable (if wrong) given the tack you are taking here.

    I twice said Cuomo overreacted. What “tack” are you talking about?

    Paul Montagu (a2342d)

  56. 55. He over-reacted BUT… Perhaps “equivocation” is a better term for what I’m trying to describe? You make it sound to me like you think Cuomo’s reaction was reasonable. Feel free to correct me if I’m misinterpreting here.

    Gryph (08c844)

  57. You make it sound to me like you think Cuomo’s reaction was reasonable.

    Words mean things: “To react or respond more strongly than is necessary or appropriate.” How does that align with “equivocation”?

    Paul Montagu (a2342d)

  58. Hannity has always been more goof than Bete Noire, CH…when times change or when Tucker drains News Corp of discretionary money for raises (provided he isnt fired first), Hannity will make a grimaced but more than adequate transition to a fluff daytime show – on radio he comes off as a more manly Regis Philbin not a fire-breather.

    urbanleftbehind (5eecdb)

  59. Not my cup of tea, but his heart’s usually in the right place…

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  60. he’s a bit earnest, a little repetitative, we know who the Murdoch boys favor,

    narciso (d1f714)

  61. I loved Cuomo’s “You can’t call me that, I’m Italian”. and if you do, its just like calling a black man the N-word.

    Brilliant. Otherwise, he showed himself to be the typical CNN clown. As Trump says, he sounds deranged and shouldn’t be given a gun permit. And I’d check his kids – if they’re under 12 – to see if they were OK.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  62. If Cuomo was Jewish we’d be hearing about how “Fredo” is really an antisemitic insult. Really.

    rcocean (1a839e)


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