American comedian Whitney Cummings mentioned on the late-night talk show “Conan” on Wednesday that she was reported to human resources last year for saying “Merry Christmas” to an intern.
Speaking with host Conan O’Brien, Cummings said:
“Last year, I was working on a TV show, and got in trouble with human resources for saying 'Merry Christmas' to an intern.”
Responding to the host’s exclamation of disbelief, she said: “That’s true. I was leaving … I was like, 'Bye, guys. Merry Christmas.' Like just a formality, what you would say.”
The comedian continued:
“I come back, like, June 6th. HR calls me and they’re like, “Hey, we need to talk to you. One of the interns is pissed off that you said 'Merry Christmas'.”
The comedian said her greeting was just a “formality,” adding, “I don’t even care how your Christmas was.”
Cummings, 37, followed up by saying the human resources official had informed her that the intern was “agnostic”.
The response was: “I was like, no, no, no, no, no. You do not get to do that.”
“Because had I known that this person was agnostic, that would mean we were in a relationship, like, that would mean we were intimately connected,” said Cummings.
“I should not know who believes in God and who doesn’t,” Cummings added.
The incident sparked an immediate reaction on social media, as many echoed Cummings' exasperation with rampant “victim culture”.
The gracious thing to do is accept the good tidings in the spirit with which it was given.— Knew Slant (@knewslant) December 20, 2019
But we live in a victim culture now, one of perpetual offense.
If someone wishes you any greeting in good spirits and you complain about it. You’re the problem.— JonO (@RealJonOC) December 20, 2019
Ridiculous but expected in our society.— Gregory Young (@GMoneyjhawk92) December 20, 2019
People need to lighten up and take any holiday greeting for what it is, well wishes. People take everything so personally.— Alexander The Standard (@TheRealPolen) December 20, 2019
Exactly. I would never be upset if someone said “Happy Hanukkah” “Have a blessed Ramadan” “Happy Diwali”! If someone is celebrating a holiday and wishes to include you in their good tidings, why be upset?— Billy Dunn (@SES_Dunn) December 20, 2019
Someone reporting me to HR for saying Merry Christmas would only make me want to say it even more.— ʞɐɹɯɐdıllo (@codylewis91) December 20, 2019
Seems to me the more appropriate thing for HR to so would be trying to get this intern some psychiatric help instead of coming to you about this non issue— Mike #GrohMustGo (@Boston__Sucks) December 20, 2019
That intern is gonna go far in the business pic.twitter.com/t5kbvJf4Rt— Marshal Patrick (@mcpatrick1977) December 20, 2019
Some netizens questioned if the incident had really taken place, as it was so “outlandish”.
This seems so outlandish, it almost sounds fake.— Michelle Verseau (@MichelleVerseau) December 20, 2019