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Clearly, the female employee bears the greater responsibility for the incident by provoking it in the first place. She should have simply accepted the gesture as well-intended. Undoubtedly, the female employee has been influenced by feminist doctrine, which holds that men are always oppressors, women are always oppressed, and a man's intent does not matter, as is demonstrated by the fact that HR automatically took the side of the female. This is also an outgrowth of our culture of sensitivity, in which people are indoctrinated with "sensitivity training" not to improve human relations, but to teach newer and more creative ways to take offense. The end result is a society rife with class warfare and people afraid to talk to one another or show kindness and chivalry towards each other.
It is also possible that HR's overreaction was driven by a fear of litigation, and intended to be a deterrent. But how long will we allow ourselves to be held hostage by the fear of litigation? How many civil rights violations will we tolerate out of a desire to avoid litigation? How long will we put off the necessary tort reform to transform our civil justice system from an extortion racket back into an instrument of justice?
There was a discussion in the Red Flag Forum two years ago in which a couple of people expressed the opinion that the letter could have been faked. They were comparing it to another warning letter received by a Domino's employee, which referenced "lava cake mix". One Domino's employee said that lava cake mix does not exist. But there is no reason to believe this newer letter is fake, since it appears the consultant may have been reprimanded more for his behavior towards the woman's reaction rather than for merely holding the door open for her. Systems Integration is a real company, by the way.
A sampling of pertinent comments from Reddit (after the jump):