So... HM LI is very doable in Tionese/MK-1 Recruit gear. By 3 people. (LR-5 one shotted)
It's very understandable that a group that's unfamiliar with the mechanics of the FP will likely encounter difficulties, but when you learn how the bosses work, you can do it. When someone walks into a HM of any kind, let alone a clearly labelled tier 2 HM, they should expect to have to put forth some effort to learn and execute the strategies required to complete the FP. If "the majority" doesn't want to do that, there's another option: Some people choose to forgo effort and overgear for things, and that's an acceptable solution as well, but they shouldn't expect to be rewarded beyond the already generous reward of 5 (plus 8, if the weekly is involved) BH comms, which can be used to buy most of the second best gear in the game.
Of course it's doable by 3 people in tionese... with voice communication, previous experience, knows their class well etc. Are you kidding me?
The fact you seem to be forgetting is the argument is the gear should not be recommended for fresh 50 PuGs for this flashpoint, try playing with a random PuG group from group finder with everyone in just tionese and see if you get far.
The argument that "you can do it in tionese so everyone else can" is a bit like the devs turning around and saying they can do TFB naked now so it won't drop gear any more.
Gear requirements should be about finding a perfect balance of something that's not too easy but not too hard either, not just finding someone that's done it once in a certain piece of gear and saying that's the requirement.