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Here’s Why Chris Cuomo Isn’t A Hypocrite For Letting Someone Say Fredo On His Show

CNN anchor Chris Cuomo is taking heat over a viral video confrontation with some idiot who called him “Fredo,” and other idiots are pimping a clip of CNN’s Ana Navarro calling Donald Trump Jr. by the same name as evidence that Cuomo’s lack of a reaction is some form of hypocrisy. It isn’t.

If you haven’t seen the video clip yet, some jerk accosted Cuomo while he was out with his family and used an insult meant to evoke the fictional character Fredo Corleone, then decided to absurdly swear he really thought that was Cuomo’s name in order to avoid an ass-kicking.

Along the way, an understandably incensed Cuomo made an ill-advised comparison, saying of the moniker “They use it as an Italian aspersion. Any of you Italian? It’s an insult to your fucking people. It’s like the N-word for us.”

In the heat of the moment, it’s likely that Cuomo simply meant to express the general idea of a slur, and overshot the mark. Overshot it badly, to be sure.

But it wasn’t long before people on social media began circulating a clip of Navarro using the same insult on Don Jr. in a panel segment with resident CNN Trump uber-apologist Steve Cortes.

During a lengthy tirade denouncing Jr. for comparing the border fence to cages in a zoo, Navarro mentioned that Trump Senior didn’t give his son a White House post, saying “Daddy kept Fredo back home.”

Critics use Cuomo’s apparent lack of a reaction to paint him as a hypocrite, which is unfair on several levels.

First of all, if you watch the clip, Cuomo follows Navarro’s rant by saying “All right, you know what?” before he’s interrupted by Cortes. It’s quite possible he was about to check Navarro, or maybe he wasn’t.

We’ll never know because Cortes jumped in to make the absurd statement that Donald Trump Senior “has never demonized immigrants,” which Cuomo did call out.

So before I go any further, let’s all let that sink in for a moment. This “Fredo-gate” bullshit is going down in the shadow of a racist mass murder that was carried out by a guy who sounded so much like Donald Trump that he had to beg people not to blame Trump in his manifesto, yet these people want you to debate something Chris Cuomo said during an aborted bar fight. F to the O to the H.

But in Cuomo’s further defense to this charge of hypocrisy, there is a key difference between calling Don Jr. “Fredo” and using the insult on Cuomo. Don Jr. isn’t Italian-American. Chris Cuomo is, and he comes from a family that has a history of speaking out against defamation of their heritage.

To whatever degree (thousands of degrees short of the n-word) the name “Fredo” is offensive to an Italian-American, it’s not the same thing as using the insult on someone who isn’t Italian. You might go around calling people “Chief” all the time, but if you said it to a Native American, they might take offense. Cuomo might have let it slide if the idiot had called him “boy,” whereas Don Lemon or Victor Blackwell might not.

I suspect that when Cuomo returns to the air, he’ll make an apology for the n-word comparison, and maybe even for threatening to throw that idiot down the stairs. But if this clip shows anything, it’s that the decent people of this country should keep this in perspective. In a world where migrants are compared to animals in a zoo and targeted by the president of the United States as “invaders,” there really is no reason to care about this “Fredo” business at all.

Watch the clip above, via CNN.

This is an opinion piece. The views expressed in this article are those of just the author.

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