Is ‘Fredo’ an Ethnic Slur Towards Italians?



chris cuomo


The identify “Fredo” has been trending on social media and in Google searches after a video of CNN anchor Chris Cuomo getting right into a heated confrontation with a heckler went viral. The person referred to Cuomo as “Fredo” and appeared to mock Cuomo by repeatedly stating that he thought that was the anchor’s identify.

Cuomo turned visibly agitated and launched right into a profanity-laced rant in opposition to the person. He instructed the person that “punk a** b*tches from the appropriate name me Fredo” and claimed that it was an ethnic insult in opposition to Italians. He in contrast the identify to the n-word and threatened to toss the person down the steps.

The trade occurred at a Lengthy Island, New York restaurant on August 11, reportedly in entrance of Cuomo’s spouse, Cristina Greeven Cuomo, and one among their youngsters. CNN’s VP of Communications Matt Dornic wrote on Twitter that the community helps Cuomo and that the anchor had “defended himself when he was verbally attacked with the usage of an ethnic slur in an orchestrated setup.” Cuomo additionally acquired assist from Fox Information host Sean Hannity, who said that Cuomo was defending himself in opposition to a “jack*ss.”

Cuomo has since expressed remorse for the outburst. He wrote on Twitter that he “ought to be higher than the fellows baiting me. This occurs on a regular basis nowadays. Usually in entrance of my household. However there’s a lesson: no want so as to add to the ugliness; I ought to be higher than what I oppose.”

The confrontation has sparked a social media debate over whether or not the identify “Fredo” is actually an ethnic slur.

Right here’s what it is advisable know.

‘Fredo’ is a Fictional Character within the Godfather Collection

Fredo Corleone is a fictional character within the Godfather film sequence, portrayed by American actor John Cazale within the iconic franchise. He’s the center son of Mafia boss Vito Corleone. The character is handed over in favor of his youthful brother, Michael, to take cost of the household enterprise. This prompts Fredo to betray his brother and try to have Michael killed.

Fredo is ultimately gunned down on a ship by Michael’s bodyguard, with Michael watching the homicide happen. Fredo is named a “weak” character who desperately tries to safe his father’s respect however can by no means appear to get there.

Edward Falco, the writer of the 2012 novel “The Household Corleone” that’s meant as a prequel to the Godfather, weighed in on Chris Cuomo being known as “Fredo.” Falco instructed the Washington Submit that he agrees that the usage of the identify was doubtless meant as an ethnic slur on this context. Cuomo has Italian heritage and the identify might have been used with the intent of slamming Cuomo as incompetent whereas additionally referencing his household background.

However Falco disagreed that the identify is equal to the n-word. He instructed the newspaper that he felt Cuomo went “overboard” with that comparability.

American research Professor Michael Mark Cohen from UC Berkeley instructed USA At present, “Fredo was an untrusted and untrustworthy son who, after being patronized and ‘handed over’ by his highly effective household, got here to betray his brother out of stupidity and ego. So sure, that’s a customized made, deep minimize form of insult for somebody like Chris Cuomo. And evidently, it minimize to the fast.”

The Identify ‘Fredo’ is Described on City Dictionary as a Reference to a ‘Screw-Up’ Household Member

Calling somebody a “Fredo” is mostly regarded as an insult because of the persona flaws exhibited by the Godfather character.

City Dictionary contains the next definition: “To be the ‘black sheep’ within the household, just like the one that’s the goof and the screw-up. Named after Fredo Corleone, who was Michael’s older brother within the Godfather, and he was thought of to be the failure within the household.”

Within the aftermath of the video going viral, it’s been identified that Chris Cuomo beforehand referred to the Fredo character throughout a radio interview in 2010. In response to the New York Submit, Cuomo went on radio host Curtis Sliwa’s AM program across the time that his older brother, Andrew Cuomo, had begun contemplating a run for the New York governor’s workplace. Sliwa instructed Cuomo that he considered his household as “la Cuomo Nostra.” (Their father, the late Mario Cuomo, additionally beforehand served as New York’s governor). Cuomo responded to Sliwa by showing to joke, “Who am I, then, Fredo?”

Many Commenters on Social Media, Together with These Who Recognized as Having Italian Ancestry, Disagreed That ‘Fredo’ is an Ethnic Slur

Chris Cuomo’s declare that the identify “Fredo” was equal to the usage of the n-word prompted a swift backlash on social media. The time period was trending all day on August 13 as folks weighed in on the talk. There have been a couple of commenters who agreed that the identify was offensive, however the majority seem like rejecting the concept it’s a racial slur, together with many who self-identified as having Italian ancestry.

Here’s a roundup of a number of the current feedback.

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