A video of CNN anchor Chris Cuomo losing his cool over being called “Fredo” is trending worldwide.
The video shows Cuomo approaching a man after the man used the term “Fredo” to refer to Cuomo. “Fredo” is a reference to Fredo Corleone from “The Godfather.”
The issue here though is that Cuomo asserts that the term is on par with “the n-word for black people,” a claim that has many Italians up in arms, and many wondering if Cuomo has any knowledge of American history.
On Monday night, CNN spokesperson released in a statement on Twitter that the cable broadcaster stood by Cuomo.
“Chris Cuomo defended himself when he was verbally attacked with the use of an ethnic slur in an orchestrated set up,” CNN spokesman Matt Dornic said in a statement on Twitter. “We completely support him.”
For those unfamiliar with The Godfather franchise, to be a “Fredo” is to be the Blacksheep in the family, and as defined by Urban Dictionary, “the one that is the goof and the screw-up. Named after Fredo Corleone, who was Michael’s older brother in the Godfather, and he was considered to be the failure in the family.”
The internet continued to pile on to Cuomo, including U.S. President Donald Trump, who decided to egg-on Cuomo further.
“I thought Chris was Fredo also,” tweeted Trump. “The truth hurts. Totally lost it! Low ratings @CNN”
A few hours later, Trump continued to rub salt into the wound, tweeting that Cuomo “shouldn’t be allowed to have any weapon.”
Though Cuomo said the term is “on par with the n-word,” the media silence when this same word was used against the Trump family in 2017, there was little to no outrage.
In 2017, the New York Times ran an article titled, “If the president is playing Godfather in this particular drama, all the grown sons are Fredo.”
The Washington Post confirmed that the Cuomo video was captured at a bar in Shelter Island, N.Y.
Update: Cuomo eventually went to Twitter to give a public apology for his behaviour.