GLAAD, who immediately called "The Voice" producers to demand that Shelton apologize for his remarks, said in a statement that Shelton exhibited "astoundingly bad judgment" with his Twitter posts. "For him to make a joke to his 300-thousand-plus followers about leaving a gay man 'beaten, bleeding and heaving' is completely unacceptable," the group said, adding, "One has to wonder how Shania feels about seeing her anthem about strong women and female empowerment turned into a violent threat."
Shelton responded to the outcry on Twitter Thursday afternoon, writing, "Hey, y'all allow me to seriously apologize for the misunderstanding with the whole re-write on the Shania song last night...It honestly wasn't even meant that way... I now know that (there) are people out there waiting to jump at everything I say on here or anywhere. But when it comes to gay/lesbian rights or just feelings... I love everybody. So go look for a real villain and leave me out of it!!!"
Maroon 5 frontman Adam Levine, one of Shelton's co-judges on "The Voice," tweeted an ambivalent yet supportive message: "What did you go and say now?" Levine wrote. "Don't sweat it big country. I know you're a good person. Well...yeah you're a good person."
Fellow country star Martina McBride wrote, "Well said, Blake," in response to Shelton's apology.
(Additional reporting by Monica Herrera, Billboard.com)