Andrew Cuomo smiles during a press briefing.

“How Selfless Is That?”: A Truly Touching Moment From NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Press Briefing

Recommended Videos

I’ve said this here before but New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s daily coronavirus press briefings are everything Donald Trump’s are not. Every day, he lays out useful information, updating the public as to the state of the virus with actual numbers and facts. He talks about where the state is now, where they want to be, what they’ve done so far to contain the virus, and what needs to be done moving forward.

Donald Trump, meanwhile, rambles off dangerous medical advice, talks to corporate CEOs, and berates the media for two hours every day.

Today, Governor Cuomo’s briefing had something else we rarely if ever see present in Trump’s: kindness. While Cuomo does base things in facts and figures, he also frequently gets anecdotal when talking about the virus. Today, he read a letter he received from a retired farmer living in Kansas and the moment was both heartwarming and heartbreaking in equal measures.

The man writes that his wife has only one lung and occasional problems with her remaining lung. She also has diabetes. They’re both in their 70s. “Frankly,” he writes, “I am afraid for her.”

The man enclosed along with his letter one unused N-95 mask, the kind that has been in such shortage among medical professionals, especially in New York. He tells Cuomo that the mask is “left over from my farming days,” and he wanted to donate it to those in need.

“If you could, would you please give this mask to a nurse or a doctor in your state?” he writes. “I have kept four masks for my immediate family. Please keep on doing what you do so well, which is to lead.”

I think most of us have stories by now of how this virus bringing out the worst in a lot of people. We’ve heard of or witnessed everything from excessive rage aimed toward grocery store clerks to a rise in anti-Asian hate crimes across the country. It’s nice to remember that there’s good out there too and it’s no wonder it made Cuomo visibly emotional to talk about it.

“A farmer in northeast Kansas,” Cuomo said today after reading the letter aloud. “His wife has one lung and diabetes. He has five masks. He sends one mask to New York for a doctor or nurse, keeps four masks. You want to talk about a snapshot of humanity? You have five masks. What do you do? Do you keep all five? Do you hide the five masks? Do you keep them for yourselves or others? No, you send one mask to New York to help a nurse or a doctor. How beautiful is that? I mean how selfless is that? How giving is that?

“It’s that love that courage that generosity of spirit that makes this country so beautiful,” he continued. “And makes Americans so beautiful, and it’s that generosity of spirit, for me, makes up for all the ugliness that you see. Take one mask, I’ll keep four. God bless America.”

(image: Governor Andrew Cuomo on Flickr)

Want more stories like this? Become a subscriber and support the site!

The Mary Sue has a strict comment policy that forbids, but is not limited to, personal insults toward anyone, hate speech, and trolling.—


The Mary Sue is supported by our audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a small affiliate commission. Learn more
related content
Read Article With a Single Line on ‘Tortured Poets Department,’ Taylor Swift Has Brought All of Charlie Puth’s Past Controversies Back to the Spotlight
Charlie Puth
Read Article Surprise, Surprise, Donald Trump’s TikTok Flip-Flop Motivations Come Down to Pure Selfishness
In this photo illustration the logo of Chinese online social media and video hosting service TikTok is displayed on a smartphone screen alongside that of that of YouTube, instant messaging software Whatsapp Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Quora, Facebook Messenger and Snapchat.
Read Article There’s a Double Standard Being Applied to Conspiracy-Touting Aaron Rodgers in the NFL
Aaron Rodgers at Cleven Browns Stadium in December 2023
Read Article Oklahoma Chooses Bigotry Over Getting To See the Incredible Nyla Rose Wrestle
Nyla Rose at NYCC.
Read Article Donald Trump Had to Sit in Court and See All the Mean Memes Potential Jurors Have Posted About Him Online
Donald Trump speaks to the media while holding news clippings
Related Content
Read Article With a Single Line on ‘Tortured Poets Department,’ Taylor Swift Has Brought All of Charlie Puth’s Past Controversies Back to the Spotlight
Charlie Puth
Read Article Surprise, Surprise, Donald Trump’s TikTok Flip-Flop Motivations Come Down to Pure Selfishness
In this photo illustration the logo of Chinese online social media and video hosting service TikTok is displayed on a smartphone screen alongside that of that of YouTube, instant messaging software Whatsapp Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Quora, Facebook Messenger and Snapchat.
Read Article There’s a Double Standard Being Applied to Conspiracy-Touting Aaron Rodgers in the NFL
Aaron Rodgers at Cleven Browns Stadium in December 2023
Read Article Oklahoma Chooses Bigotry Over Getting To See the Incredible Nyla Rose Wrestle
Nyla Rose at NYCC.
Read Article Donald Trump Had to Sit in Court and See All the Mean Memes Potential Jurors Have Posted About Him Online
Donald Trump speaks to the media while holding news clippings
Author
Vivian Kane
Vivian Kane (she/her) is the Senior News Editor at The Mary Sue, where she's been writing about politics and entertainment (and all the ways in which the two overlap) since the dark days of late 2016. Born in San Francisco and radicalized in Los Angeles, she now lives in Kansas City, Missouri, where she gets to put her MFA to use covering the local theatre scene. She is the co-owner of The Pitch, Kansas City’s alt news and culture magazine, alongside her husband, Brock Wilbur, with whom she also shares many cats.