Kenya Moore issued an apology on March 23, following the backlash of the “Real Housewives of Atlanta” star’s Native American headdress on “RHOA” episode aired this past weekend. Bravo Network released their statement after being called out by a Native American nonprofit organization.
Moore — who initially wore the costume during Falynn Guobadia’s Halloween party last year — apologized on Twitter in a captionless tweet with a gray box that read, “I want to sincerely apologize for inappropriately wearing the Native American headdress as a costume.”
She added, “I now realize that this was both disrespectful and insensitive and would never have done it if I had that knowledge and understanding beforehand. I regret it. When you know better, you do better. I am genuinely sorry.”
Moore’s apology comes a day after the Bravo network apologized to a Native American activist group on Instagram called IllumiNative. The nonprofit organization called out the network and the 50-year-old in a lengthy caption for her “warrior princess” costume.
They said, “We are deeply disturbed by last night’s episode of #RHOA in which @thekenyamoore wore a Native American “warrior princess” costume. Costumes that mock Native peoples, defame our traditions and cultures, and perpetuate negative stereotypes are racist.”
The organization continued, “Playing Indian” is a form of mascotry that is not just offensive, it is part of a long history of how Native peoples have been dehumanized. Countless research studies show the harm these images, actions, and the normalization of these behaviors have on our youth. We also know the dehumanization and sexualization of Native women contributes to the crisis of murdered and missing Indigenous women. #MMIW”
IlliumiNative also expressed their concerns because no “producers” or “executives” from the network intervened even after several of Moore’s “RHOA” cast members mentioned how “offensive and uncomfortable” the costume was on air during the March 21 episode. They also brought up past instances where the company has faced similar “racist and offensive” behavior but has done nothing to prevent those acts from happening again “which goes against the values @comcast professes to have.”
The nonprofit organization wrapped up the caption by requesting an apology from Moore, Bravo, NBC, Comcast and Andy Cohen for the “harm” they caused in the Native American community.
“It is important that @bravotv, @comcast, @nbcuniversal, @bravoandy, and @thekenyamoore apologize for the harm they have caused Native peoples and commit to ensuring offensive displays like this never happen again. Native people are not a costume.”
Following IllumiNative’s post, Bravo’s official Instagram issued a public apology in the comment section. The statement read, “Bravo aims to have the highest standards of respect and inclusivity and we recognize that the recent episode of The Real Housewives of Atlanta, in which a cast member wears a Native American costume, did not uphold those values. We had hoped it would provide a teachable moment, however, in retrospect, it is clear that the network did not address this properly given the gravity of the situation. We apologize to both the Native American community and our audience as a whole.”
The mother of one ultimately apologized to the organization the same day she released her statement on Twitter.
Moore’s apology comes a day after the “RHOA” star responded to the backlash she was receiving on social media for the Native American costume she wore during the Guobadia’s Halloween bash. The reality star seemingly justified her costume because it was a part of her heritage.
Moore retweeted and reacted to a post that criticized her outfit choice after the former beauty queen accused her “RHOA” co-star Porsha Williams of using her Black Lives Matter work for clout. Moore said in a now-deleted tweet, “Also part of my heritage.”