Church Ladies Behaving Badly

There’s no revenge like Church Lady Revenge.  

A couple of years ago, some Edmonton Church Ladies were in the grips of a savage altercation over a Church Gentleman, and predictably, it wasn’t long before the situation spiraled into insanity.  The chief antagonist in the dispute launched a Facebook Vendetta with a fusillade of snarly comments about one of the other ladies, prompting a complaint to their church.  Outraged, Facebook Warrior Church Lady decided to ratchet up the pressure, and she knew how to do it:  a pharmacist by trade, she had an edge in this Battle Royale.  You know where this is going…

Pharmacist Church Lady’s Facebook wall soon displayed medical information she’d dug up on not only her adversary, but also her adversary’s friends.  Which is when everything kind of went to shit, as power-crazed shots at upping the ante often do, and Pharmacist Church Lady soon felt her enemies’ wrath.  And today,  “Vengeance is ours”, sayeth the Church Ladies:

An Edmonton pharmacist has been fined $15,000 after she obtained personal medical information for several people off Alberta’s electronic health system, then posted some of the details to Facebook. […]

An investigation revealed Songgadan had been fighting with a group of women at her church in the summer of 2009 about the romantic activities and interests of a man in the same congregation, a news release states.

During the conflict, Songgadan posted “disparaging comments” about one of the women on Facebook, the release says. When the woman complained to the church, Songgadan went into the woman’s Netcare records and posted information about her prescription medication on the social media website.

A review of the case then discovered Songgadan had gone into the health files of eight people who may have been sympathetic to the original woman who complained.

I can’t say I disagree with the Church Ladies’ outrage at their private information being posted online for all the world to see.  But if these Church Ladies are the anti-abortion variety, and there’s a pretty good chance that being Church Ladies, they are, maybe this experience will give them a better understanding of the devastating invasion of privacy inherent in laws like this.

9 Responses to “Church Ladies Behaving Badly”

  1. 1 fhg1893 Thursday, December 8, 2011 at 7:52 am

    Full disclosure: I’m religious. Though I’m religious in a very unique and peculiar way – indeed so much so that what I’d call religion would be something entirely alien to this brand of church lady, (and most people in general for that matter) so please excuse me if I jump on the athiest anti-religion bandwagon just for a moment. It’s complicated okay? 🙂

    What is it about these religious zealots that causes them to have such acrimonious spats amongst themselves? Is it a truisim that if left alone long enough the deeply religious will inevitably turn inward and start harming each other? And, over church gossip at that?

    Ah nevermind, I’ve personally pissed off enough religious people in a short enough space of time that I guess I know first hand that religious belief really IS in fact a pre-cursor of vicious back-biting, anger and factionalizing.

    Maybe religion is almost without exception a really bad method of human congregation. Or maybe human beings aren’t nearly as holy as we like to think we are.

  2. 2 bleatmop Thursday, December 8, 2011 at 10:10 am

    From one Mennonite friend of my wife’s once told us, apparently entire colonies have split into two different ones over the size of the polka-dots on the headscarves that the women must wear, and that these arguments were religious in nature. I took it as just more proof that when left to their own devices people will always find some way to wedge their religion into every aspect of everyone’s lives around them.

  3. 3 JJ Thursday, December 8, 2011 at 11:52 am

    Full disclosure: I’m religious.

    Nobody’s perfect 😛

    Besides, aren’t you a Pagan? That’s a religion I can definitely get behind. I used to be a Pagan myself. The bad religions are the monotheist ones, particularly the Abramhamic ones.

    What is it about these religious zealots that causes them to have such acrimonious spats amongst themselves?

    Its their obsession with guilt and punishment and being judgmental. I mean the hardcore, biblical literalists, dominionists etc. (More liberal religious people I think are just very humble in the face of a power great enough to create us and everything we see around us, at least that’s my understanding.)

    I don’t think religion necessarily has to be bad: for some people its pretty inspiring and comforting. I think some of it has gotten bad because biblical writings reflect the weirdness and hangups of the writers, as well as just telling the story of what happened.

  4. 4 JJ Thursday, December 8, 2011 at 12:09 pm

    Ha! Amazing. I think Mennonites are generally super peaceful, but not always I guess.

    Yeah, I think the headscarves are part of the religion, like the hijab or those headcoverings women wear when meeting the pope. So I can see people getting pretty wound up about them. Its a religious show of respect, and I guess people want it done right.

    The trouble is that there are so many religions and all of them think theirs is the one that’s right. What a recipe for disaster

  5. 5 fhg1893 Thursday, December 8, 2011 at 3:26 pm

    “Besides, aren’t you a Pagan?”

    Used to be. Maybe still? I dunno anymore. When I came out as an unrepentant critic of modern third-wave Marxist feminism, well, that ended that relationship pretty quickly. I know this is a blog with a feminist bent, and I’m not looking to pick a fight, and further, I’ve got absolutely nothing against second-wave equality-based feminism. My beef is strictly limited to third-wave feminism which seems to have been predominantly taken over by Marxists. In other words, I really like Wendy McElroy.

    Back to faith, I guess. At the moment, I’m of the opinion that our existence has to have some kind of meaning, which points to some sort of creator. But beyond that, pretty much everything that we say about the divine is pretty much just plain made-up.

    George explains it fairly well in this slightly longish rant, starting at about 7 minutes.

    In other words, I’m just as confused, awed and amazed as everybody else, I’m just willing to admit to it, and accept that we have a pretty substantial capacity for flinging bullshit. I’m not willing to rule out the existence of “God,” because “random shit” just doesn’t explain the universe. Sorry Richard Dawkins, but there might a big… something. I also have no clue what it is, what it wants, or if its even self-aware! And I’m not convinced that the big something even has a penis, or a vulva or what size it might happen to be. So I view with serious speculation any kind of religious “rules” that it thinks to impose on us. Plus, I kinda hope that there is a big something, even if I’m not convinced, because having nothing in reality is really depressing and very disappointing. What was the point of existence? Cosmic accident? That doesn’t explain anything, it’s inherently unsatisfying, so I struggle, and that’s okay.

    Remember when I said that my “religion” would be alien to most people? Makes more sense now. And sadly these religious squabbles seem poised to get worse. Dig through the Qu’ran some time…

  6. 6 bleatmop Thursday, December 8, 2011 at 11:56 pm

    FHG: “What was the point of existence? Cosmic accident? ”

    I’m not sure if you are interested in my point of view on this, so I’ll give it anyway and just hope you are 🙂 If you’re not interested in my point of view, then kindly disregard this message. Note: I am an atheist.

    It seems to me that there are two different questions in the that quote. The first being the age old, what is the meaning of life questions and the second being how did we get here. To answer the question, science can tell you a lot about that. The study of Cosmology has a lot of answers on how the universe has come to become what it is now and is a exciting and developing field. Abiogenesis has a lot of answers on how life first developed on this planet, and is also an exciting and developing field. Evolution has a lot of answers about how that first life came to be the life we see now on the planet. This field is less exciting, but highly interesting.

    I certainly can’t explain all those fields, but if you look on the intertoobs, specifically YouTube, there are a few people out there that do an incredible amount of work explaining these concepts to the lay person.

    My answer to the first question related to the second one. It’ll take a little bit to get there, so stick with me

    When you look at the sheer number of galaxies out there with the number of life supporting planets in orbit around life supporting suns, orbiting in the green zone; when you consider the sheer number of these planets are a very large number (200-400 billion solar systems in each of 100 to 500 billion galaxies), it seems that life elsewhere in the universe is entirely likely. However, despite that, we are the only life that we can find in our own little galaxy, so far. The nearest planet thought to be inhabitable is 4.36 light years away, or 60,000 years away using our fastest know space travel techniques right now.

    What’s all this got to do with my meaning of life? It’s simply that this life here is so special, relative to our surroundings. That we have this opportunity to look up at the stars in awe and wonder what’s out there, that we can have friends and family and other loved ones, that we can work to make the lives of our fellow humans and other forms of life here on Earth better, that is all the meaning to this life that I need. It is for each of us to explore that which is important to us and work towards it. Our lives are fleeting, and to live a life that leaves the world around me in a better place is my personal meaning of life. That’s enough for this insignificant spec of carbon on this insignificant spec of a planet in this insignificant galaxy.

    To me, adding magic deities, that we have no proof of, offering rewards that we have no way to verify are waiting for us after death only cheapens this existence and leads some to squander it.

    Also, I love that Carlin clip. I try and put it on my Facebook page at least once a year.

  7. 7 fhg1893 Friday, December 9, 2011 at 7:51 am

    It’s fine Bleatmop, but I think I’m bit more philosophical than that. Life, as we know it on earth need not have a particular meaning. I detect a trace of the atheist contempt for religion in your comment, and I appreciate the reasons for it, namely, that you are of the opinion that each life is so unique that ending yours, or somebody else for something as foolish as “magic sky man” is absurd. I even go so far as to agree with that.

    I’m talking about existence its self. Not so much, why are we here. Why the universe? Why billions of stars, and billions of planets? What’s the reason for having anything at all? Why EXISTENCE?

    And I don’t know the answer to why existence…

    I believe that there is a supernatural, or spiritual side to reality – and for that, I have my reasons. But what does it look like? I really don’t know, and I would agree that whether you believe in such things or not, we’re poorly equipped to draw a lot of conclusions about it, and certainly I wouldn’t go so far as to design a system of ethics, or moral lessons on something which probably can’t be proven at this time.

    I guess I like to think that I’m a little beyond “magical sky person” at this point… I don’t know if there is an “afterlife,” and I’m not in any hurry to find out. But at the same time, I think I want, or need this life, and more broadly existence in general to be for something. To be more than the sum of its parts.

    Coming at it from another direction, here’s G’Kar in one of the best parables EVER.

    Most religious people, like the church ladies are standing in their own light.

    I’m humbly believe that I’m one of just a few who’s really searching, and really looking at the wall.

  8. 8 bleatmop Friday, December 9, 2011 at 1:36 pm

    FHG: I hope you find that which you are looking for.

    As to the question about why existence, my answer is I don’t know. I’m not even sure that there needs to be an answer. Or if the answer is some sort of god, then why does that god exist?

    The answer of why existence can always be asked of any beginning, whether it is the universe or a god. At some point something had to exist without a cause or reason. I’m prone to taking the option with the best evidence for it, but open to accepting other causes should convincing evidence arise for them. Right now I see it as the universe started from the Big Bang and have no idea if there was anything before that.

  9. 9 Peter Saturday, December 10, 2011 at 3:43 am

    When you look at the sheer number of galaxies…it seems that life elsewhere in the universe is entirely likely.

    And yet, despite an infinitely greater capacity to peer into the far reaches of the universe than we had sixty years ago, we are no further ahead in solving this.

    Another paradox is that, although an almost visceral rejection of any teleological (i.e. purpose or design) explanation of existence is widespread among modern scientists, bloggers and rationalists, it was much easier to be, in Dawkins’s words, an “intellectually fulfilled atheist” sixty years ago. Back then it was common and scientifically defensible to believe the universe had no beginning or end, and was stable. Life could have started with a freak chemical reaction (remember the warm pond of primal goop) and Darwinism took it from there. Stuff happens. Our lack of contact with aliens was just a function of distance and technological primitiveness, but of course they were out there. How could we be so arrogant to imagine we are alone? Science was a work-in-progress that would progressively inevitably reveal and de-mystery it all for us.

    Today, we know the universe had a dramatic beginning and is racing to…where? No one knows. The cosmological and physical laws have proven to be so fine-tuned and interdependant that even the slightest variation of many of them would have obliterated everything. Cell structure has shown to be so astoundingly complex that the chance of life beginning spontaneously has been calculated to be less than one in the number of atoms in the universe. Thousands of the best minds in physics have been working on string theory for two generations in hope it would lead them to a grand unified theory of everything, but so far all we have are an infinite number of incompatible string theories. Astronomers and cosmologists who used to fantasize about little green men now get orgasmic at the hint of a few vaporous molecules of water millions of light years away. Darwinism is recognized to have many serious deficiencies that are deflected from public view by keeping up a high-profile attack on American fundamentalist yokels.

    Ever more scornfully and angrily, biologists and physicists reject any hint of teleology and respond with fantastic theories about things like multiple, unprovable universes, all following different physical laws, shrugs at statistically fantastic improbabilities and assertions that life “must” be out there, even though they have no evidence at all. More than one sage within these communities has commented that there seems to be a psychological, rather than scientific, dynamic at play. The modern mind seems to be as disturbed and emotionally thrown by the suggestion there is something beyond scientific materialism as the typical mid-19th century mind was by the suggestion there isn’t.

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