Should Andrew Cuomo Go To Jail for “Forcible Touching”?

Should Andrew Cuomo Go To Jail for “Forcible Touching”?

Should Andrew Cuomo Go To Jail for “Forcible Touching”?

Why not ask the 21 men—mostly Black or brown—currently locked up for the same crime?

Facebook
Twitter
Email
Flipboard
Pocket

Waaaah!” go the white men.

Yesterday, the Albany County sheriff charged Andrew Cuomo with a misdemeanor for grabbing a woman’s breast—and the grievance politics are already flying. In addition to the randos on Twitter rallying to the disgraced ex-governor’s defense, there’s his spokesman, Rich Azzopardi, eagerly ginning them up about who the real victim is: “The abuse of power and misconduct demonstrated by this Cowboy Sheriff and AG James has to stop,” he said in a statement Friday.

Speaking of victims, remember Brittany Commisso? She’s the $65,000-a-year state employee who described Cuomo summoning her to “work” at the Governor’s Mansion, where he assaulted her. The new criminal charges come on the heels of the attorney general’s independent investigation and 168-page report verifying Commisso’s account of Cuomo’s truly gross misconduct, including some pathetic and frankly eighth-grade attempts to feel her up under the pretense of too tight hugs and forced selfies. Unfortunately, it’s that picture the New York Post and others are now plastering all over the Internet without context, making it seem like Commisso was happy to be locked into her boss’s death grip, so she probably didn’t mind when he slid his hand down her shirt. What people need to see instead is a young woman at work smiling her way through an illegal and disgusting prelude by the governor of New York to violate her “for the purposes of degrading and gratifying his sexual desires,” to quote the complaint.

Forcible touching is an Article 130 crime in the penal code punishable by up to one year in prison. And much like the aggrieved white men of the FDNY and NYPD protesting New York City’s vaccine mandate for public employees, the guy who signs the laws thinks he’s above them.

He’s not alone. Piping up on Morning Joe, the eponymous host groused about how Cuomo is being targeted and these charges would never be brought against “Andrew Smith.” Wow, OK. For one, if Joe Scarborough’s imaginary friend is a white guy, then, yeah, he probably wouldn’t be charged given that “they let you do it, you can do anything,” as a man who knows about forcible touching once said. But if Smith is Black or brown, like most of the 21 people currently locked up at Rikers Island for the same crime, then they sure as shit do. And why should there be any exception for the previously most powerful man in the state—whom Westchester County Executive George Latimer once shamelessly compared to Emmet Till? (Latimer subsequently apologized.) “He’s being railroaded!” they whine, like Scarborough, who erroneously claimed on national television, “If someone said something to a friend, that’s the new standard!”

This is all more of the same complete and utter bullshit from Cuomo and his stans. Dubbing themselves “We Decide Inc”—which seems fitting for a fan club devoted to a guy who doesn’t understand consent—they’ve opened an online shop selling sweatshirts emblazoned with meaningless Cuomoisms like, “As complicated as life gets, it’s as simple as Life is.”

Fine. In which case I’ll take one “Allegedly” T-shirt, please.

Thank you for reading The Nation

We hope you enjoyed the story you just read, just one of the many incisive, deeply-reported articles we publish daily. Now more than ever, we need fearless journalism that shifts the needle on important issues, uncovers malfeasance and corruption, and uplifts voices and perspectives that often go unheard in mainstream media.

Throughout this critical election year and a time of media austerity and renewed campus activism and rising labor organizing, independent journalism that gets to the heart of the matter is more critical than ever before. Donate right now and help us hold the powerful accountable, shine a light on issues that would otherwise be swept under the rug, and build a more just and equitable future.

For nearly 160 years, The Nation has stood for truth, justice, and moral clarity. As a reader-supported publication, we are not beholden to the whims of advertisers or a corporate owner. But it does take financial resources to report on stories that may take weeks or months to properly investigate, thoroughly edit and fact-check articles, and get our stories into the hands of readers.

Donate today and stand with us for a better future. Thank you for being a supporter of independent journalism.

Ad Policy
x