RHOC's Kelly Dodd Responds to Backlash Over 'Drunk Wives Matter' Hat and Lack of Masks at Bridal Shower
The backlash started on Sunday after The Real Housewives of Orange County star posted pictures from her bridal shower, in which attendees were seen posing next to one another without wearing face masks
Kelly Dodd is defending herself after sporting a controversial hat at her bridal shower, where guests did not appear to wear a mask or practice social distancing in photos shared on social media.
The backlash started on Sunday after The Real Housewives of Orange County star, 45, posted several pictures from the party, in which attendees — including castmates Emily Simpson, Gina Kirschenheiter and Elizabeth Lyn Vargas — were all seen posing next to one another without a protective face covering.
While Dodd called the celebration "an amazing bridal shower," one Instagram user commented that it was more like a "Covid party."
"no one is sick 😷," Dodd replied.
When another follower remarked that they "wish she was more responsible" during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, Dodd responded that she's "never been sick" and called COVID-19 "a super flu not a death sentence!"
On Monday, Dodd shared another group photo in which partygoers can be seen wearing matching white face masks, writing in the caption, "People were asking where are the masks?? Well here they are !!"
Another shot showed Dodd and other guests holding masks in their hands while standing shoulder-to-shoulder.
However, the lack of masks and absence of social distancing were not the only things fans were criticizing in the comment section. Many followers also took aim at a hat that Dodd wore, which read, "Drunk Wives Matter."
One commenter called the headwear "insensitive" in light of the Black Lives Matter movement and ongoing protests over racial injustice.
"it's not," Dodd wrote back. "my girlfriend bought it for me as a gift. it's a play on words . Some people aren't that smart."
The Bravo star also called the hat a "joke" in a since-deleted Instagram video, according to E! Online.
"You know what, all lives matter," Dodd said, according to the outlet. "People that can't get a joke, go f— yourselves."
This was not the first time Dodd faced criticism over her Instagram posts. In April, Dodd came under fire after she said that the coronavirus was "God’s way of thinning the herd."
The insensitive comment, which stems from the idea of removing genetically weaker animals from a group, came about after Dodd posted an Instagram photo from an airplane and was criticized by a fan for traveling back to California from New York, where her fiancé Rick Leventhal — a Fox News Channel Senior Correspondent — is based.
“If it’s dangerous why are the airlines still flying?” Dodd wrote in the comment section. “You think I want to fly? I had to get back, how is that elitist? People are so judgemental [sic] it’s sick!”
“Do you know how many people died from the H1N1, the swine flu or SARS?” Dodd continued, writing, “It’s 25% get your facts straight you are only hearing numbers not the reality! It’s God’s way of thinning the herd! If you are vulnerable or compromised stay inside. If you don’t protect others by wearing masks and gloves keep your distance and don’t go out if you are ill!! It’s common sense!”
RELATED VIDEO: RHOC‘s Kelly Dodd Says She’s ‘Experienced Racism Personally’ as ‘Woman of Color’ amid Backlash
The Positive Beverage owner later apologized for her remarks, saying in a series of videos on her Instagram Stories that she didn't mean what she said.
“When I wrote that it’s ‘God’s way of thinning the herd’ that’s not what I meant. What I meant was, do these pandemics happen because it’s God’s way? I’m not God, I’m not insensitive, I feel bad for all the families that lost loved ones and I do think we should all stay home and protect everybody. That’s not what I meant and I want to apologize to anyone that got offended, okay? I’m sorry.”
Dodd continued her apology, explaining, “So for anybody who felt offended by my stupid writing of God thinning the herd, I don’t — I’m just asking a question. Is it it God’s way of thinning the herd? I don’t know.”
“I just feel bad and my choice of words were stupid and I hope you guys can all forgive me for saying something so ridiculous and so stupid. So again, please accept my apology, and I feel bad for everybody out there that has lost loved ones, and I hope everybody’s safe and protects themselves from this pandemic,” she concluded.
As of Monday, there have been more than 7,453,700 cases of COVID-19 and 209,600 deaths from coronavirus-related illnesses in the United States, according to a New York Times database.
As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from CDC, WHO, and local public health departments. PEOPLE has partnered with GoFundMe to raise money for the COVID-19 Relief Fund, a GoFundMe.org fundraiser to support everything from frontline responders to families in need, as well as organizations helping communities. For more information or to donate, click here.