"It bothers me that Kathryn is not being held accountable," she said on Thursday's episode

By Jodi Guglielmi
January 14, 2021 10:00 PM

Leva Bonaparte is taking the men of Southern Charm to task.

On Thursday night's episode, Leva expressed her disappointment in Craig Conover, Shep Rose and Austen Kroll for "coddling" Kathryn Dennis after she was accused of racism.

The criticism came after Leva got into a heated argument with Austen when he interrupted her conversation with Kathryn about the incident at a beach party and accused the restaurant owner of attacking his friend.

"I literally wanted to say to the guys, 'Why are you guys coddling someone that said something so viciously racist to somebody? That makes me think you're racist,'" Leva said, recalling how Kathryn spent most of her time with Craig at the beach, instead of the other women.

Credit: John Valkos/Bravo; Tommy Garcia/Bravo; Mike Windle/NBCUniversal via Getty

"The fact that you are coddling her right now, and yelling at me and calling me a bully, either you don't know what happened, you're uninformed — I don't know people who do that," she added of her fight with Austen. "I won't stand for it."

Kathryn was accused of racism for using a monkey emoji in an interaction with a Black radio show host last summer. (She previously apologized for the racially insensitive incident, acknowledging that her use of the emoji "was offensive.")

Credit: John Valkos/Bravo; Tommy Garcia/Bravo

Danni Baird agreed with Leva, saying Kathryn hides behind the guys for protection. "She convinced Craig and all the guys [that people are against her]," Danni argued.

Later in the episode, Leva confronted Shep and questioned why he didn't take a stronger stance on the issue.

"Of all the boys, Shep, you are the one to not coddle people," she said. "It bothers me that Kathryn is not being held accountable."

But Shep said he didn't feel like Kathryn should be "ruined" for making a mistake. "You have to allow someone to change. I'm not a judge, jury, or executioner, and I refuse to be one."

"I hope that she will change her ways, but I don't expect anything from her," he told Leva. "I've just sort of kept my mouth shut about it."

Credit: John Valkos/Tommy Garcia/Bravo

Shep admitted that he wasn't aware of the full situation surrounding the emoji scandal and purposely avoided getting involved.

"Burying his head in the sand is absolutely the definition of white privilege," Leva said.

While talking to Craig, it became clear that he also didn't have the full story.

"I'm just blown away," he said. "I'm glad Leva is telling me this, it makes a lot more sense. I really didn't understand everything at the beach. But this is bad."

"I have always been a protector of her, but now it sounds like it's turning into [a situation where] you can't really make excuses for the behavior anymore," he added.

RELATED VIDEO: Leva Bonaparte on 'Southern Charm' Cast: Patricia Is Goals, Austen Is Lost & Kat Has Potential

Speaking to PEOPLE last month, Leva, who is Iranian by descent but spent most of her childhood in Canada and South America, said she was glad the show is tackling "these awkward topics" this season.

"I really pray and hope that it resonates with the viewer and it allows people to understand that we can have these awkward conversations," she said. "And as you tune into the season, you see things boil to the surface and some things get resolved and some things don't, but at the end of the day, there's no hate."

Southern Charm airs Thursdays (9 p.m. ET) on Bravo.

To help combat systemic racism, consider learning from or donating to these organizations:

• Campaign Zero works to end police brutality in America through research-proven strategies.

• ColorofChange.org tries to make the government more responsive to racial disparities.

• National Cares Mentoring Movement provides social and academic support to help Black youth succeed in college and beyond.