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Homeland Security TSA Agent Exposed As Anti-Muslim Bigot

13 October 2011 Loonwatch.com 14 Comments Email This Post Email This Post

Homeland Security TSA Agent Exposed As Anti-Muslim Bigot

Roy Egan, “a veteran officer with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security in Chicago” and a TSA agent, was confronted by a reporter for his rabid anti-Muslim Facebook comments. Right now, the story is limited to local ABC News. I wonder if this will be aired on national and cable news networks.

A word of caution is in order: Roy Egan is just one part of a much larger problem. He is a cog in a much larger Islamophobic machine. The Department of Homeland Security and the TSA are operating inherently racist, bigoted, and fear-mongering policies.

(cross-posted from ABC)

October 12, 2011 (CHICAGO) (WLS) — A veteran officer with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security in Chicago is being disciplined after posting hundreds of racist and derogatory comments on Facebook.

His name is Roy Egan. Not only were Officer Egan’s racial and religious rants open for anyone to see, for years he openly identified himself by name on Facebook and listed his employer as U.S. Homeland Security-TSA, the Transportation Security Administration.

For the past nine years, Egan has worked as a TSA baggage screener at O’Hare Airport. The 46-year-old has noted on his Facebook page, “I look for bad stuff going on airplanes.”

But it wasn’t Egan’s personal data that caught the eye of the I-Team. It was his public postings calling “Islam a cult that glorifies death…and a filthy religion.” It is a theme Egan repeated in postings just about every day: that Muslims should be exterminated.

In the garage at Egan’s southwest suburban home, the I-Team questioned the nine-year TSA officer about his anti-Muslim statements.

Goudie: “You posted those, didn’t you?
Egan: It was common stuff I picked off the web and made comments on.
Goudie: What does it say that a TSA officer is saying these kinds of things about Muslims?
Egan: I don’t refer to it in my job.”

Egan’s job is to screen baggage at O’Hare. Since 9/11, the treatment of Muslim travelers and allegations of Middle Eastern profiling, have dogged Homeland Security agencies.

Officer Egan recently posted, “does anything at all make you smile more than a Muslim burning by his own hateful hand.” He maintains such beliefs don’t interfere with his work.

Goudie: “How about if some Muslim name, on a piece of luggage comes by you? Does it get extra scrutiny?
Egan: No, no. That’s against the rules. I wouldn’t do it. There’s no reason for me to open it unless we’re mandated to open it via the machine telling us to. I would never discriminate against a passenger.
Goudie: Do you understand why this attracted our attention?
Egan: I suppose…I don’t hide what I do. I don’t think anything I’ve said is illegal. I don’t think, I definitely don’t do anything illegal.”

“It made me sick. It’s chilling to know that someone who is a federal employee and works at TSA of all places can hold these views with such hatred and such intensity, and to hold them publicly on his Facebook page unabashedly without any sort of regret. It really, it’s scary,” said Ahmed Rehab, Council on American-Islamic Relations.

Egan also posted against gays, Hispanics and blacks. He called President Obama “Muslim-in chief,” made racial comments on Obama’s skin color and said he hopes to “live long enough to see him die.” He described Michelle Obama as a “ghetto snipe” and other names unsuitable to print. And to Attorney General Eric Holder he posted, “die tasting your own blood.”

Egan: “If you read the comment, and it was based on an article that was written, and I’m just commenting on an article. I think he’s committing crimes against our citizens.
Goudie: And he should be dead.
Egan: I didn’t say that. I don’t like the guy.”

TSA officials would not speak on camera, but after learning of our findings TSA officials placed Egan on administrative leave and are moving to fire him.

In a statement, a spokesman said, “TSA has management directives in place governing employee conduct. We hold our security officers to the highest professional and ethical standards. TSA learned of the situation and took immediate steps to initiate the individual’s removal from federal service.”

In my conversation with Egan, conducted before he was suspended, the veteran TSA officer seemed immovable.

Egan: “I don’t do anything against policy, I’ve never done anything against policy that I’m aware of.
Goudie: You’re OK with the things that you’ve posted here, for the public to see?
Roy: I don’t know what you’re fishing for but I’m not trying to do anything against anybody. It’s commentary. It’s freedom of speech commentary.
Goudie: Why would you put this up for the public to see, though?
Roy: I’m not the only one. It’s all over the Internet.”

“We’re going to be in touch with TSA to work with them in order to ensure that this is not a situation that is replicated and that it’s not a deeper problem,” said Rehab.

TSA officials in Chicago declined to answer our questions about screener training and evaluation and whether authorities monitor social media in an attempt to weed out bigoted employees. TSA does have a code of conduct that requires its employees on or off duty to conduct themselves in a way that doesn’t cause the public to question their judgment or harm the agency’s mission.

Transportation Security Administration www.tsa.gov

TSA management directive on employee conductwww.tsa.gov/assets/pdf/foia/TSA_MD_1100_73_5_FINALv2_090521.pdf

Council on American-Islamic Relations www.cairchicago.org

U.S. Department of Homeland Security www.dhs.gov/index.shtm

(Copyright ©2011 WLS-TV/DT. All Rights Reserved.)
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14 Comments »

  1. The man may be a bigot but he does not work with the public he simply screens bags. He does not deserve to be fired for his views when they impact no one except the ones that read them. As a Muslim you can think what you want but at some point a Muslim is going to express the view that Homosexuality is wrong and someone is going to claim that Muslim is a bigot and there goes that job. Everyone has views, and some of them are stupid but if the views do not directly impact the job then people should not be disciplined for them or fired for them. We can all say horaay we got rid of the bigot but we all stand to lose a great more than we gain by supporting such actions.

  2. Criley,
    The problem was views Islam as a filthy religion, and that all Muslims should be exterminated. That is a very dangerous thing to say, and it is an abuse of his first amendment rights. And yes, even though homosexuality is viewed as detestable in Islam, it is also viewed the same way in Judaism and Chrisitianity, but the Quran itself does not give Muslims permission to kill homos. God says he himself will punish them. The reason u might think stoning of gays is part of Islam is bcuz of Iran’s culture (adopting the punishment from the Bible).

  3. He’s a public employee, which means he’s being paid by you and me and by Muslim Americans and all tax-payers. He’s said things openly against Black people, Hispanic people, Muslim people. In doing so he has breached the code of conduct he agreed to as a condition of his employment. You can say it is unfair to him, everyone has views, etc. It doesn’t change the fact that he agreed to a code of conduct and broke it.

    Do you want someone who has such strong biases against different groups of people searching everyone’s baggage? Maybe you’re not on the list of people he hates so it doesn’t bother you. It is definitely part of that job to be impartial and fair to all citizens and he has demonstrated he is not really capable of that.

    Furthermore, his freedom of speech hasn’t been taken away. He’s still free to make ridiculously hateful comments on Facebook and elsewhere, he just won’t be employed with TSA anymore.

  4. Don’t worry about him, He is a looser, plus fat and ugly I guess even wowmen dont look at him. HE should be dieting instead of showing Hatred to Muslims.There are so many Muslim Doctors around Chicago. He might need to go to see one to get advise on how to reduce his Fat.

  5. The comments made about Muslims or any other group are protected free speech under the US Constitution.If the man threatened Obama or Holder that is crime and not protected speech. If he did violate a code of conduct he could be fired. However he can also appeal and challenge that code of conduct.I’m reminded of the case of a man who burned pages of the Koran near ground zero he was public employee who was fired. He sued, won that suit got his job back along with back pay.

  6. Ok if we use this as a code of conduct issue in conjunction with all public employees and private employees since their business could suffer, then the only people with freedom of speech are rich people who do not need jobs or who own the companies and people who do not work for a living. Thinking like this only restricts the workers of our society who have many beliefs. This is not a slippery slope this is the cliff from which we all plunge into only being able to give socially acceptable comments and opinions. Freedom of speech should not be restricted to only the rich and unemployed it should be respected by all. Look at this headline/link:

    http://www.bostonherald.com/news/regional/view.bg?articleid=1373223

    This principal is banning holidays and attempting to prevent celebrations due to her own beliefs. She will get away with it because to disagree with her would not be politically correct. However, if she was of the strong belief that U.S. Traditions made our country strong and tried to incentivize the celebration of such days she would, more than likely, be place upon administrative leave and possibly fired. Both views have equal merit but one view is not popular thus that speech would be stifled by a very vocal minority.

    Here is one more: I hope it does not cause the comment not to print:

    http://www.infowars.com/house-bill-would-criminalize-satire-of-tsa/

    Now I am not sure if it would or would not actually criminalize satire but it is one more step to the people on this forum not to be able to protest what you believe is unfair treatment of Muslims by the TSA. Why? because the bill is open to interruption by government lawyers and could be used to be equivocal to the Alien and Sedition acts of 1798 in response to critiques of this agency. How long ago was it that a prosecutor in Louisiana used the law against making weapons of mass destruction against a meth producer so as to put him in jail for the rest of his life. Seat belt laws were meant to save lives but now we use them to charge people with murder if the kid in the back seat slips his or hers off. Law after law is being twisted to the extent that I now doubt that any citizen can actually go a month without breaking some law and being subject to arrest. Drivers in DC going to jail over late registration. I was pulled over and I had not placed my most recent insurance card in my car. It was an oversight but the policeman made sure that I knew he could arrest me and impound my car but due to his benevolence he was not going to do so.

    Ok I am ranting but our freedoms are slipping away as our subjugation to authority increases. We need to protect the worst of us in order to keep our freedoms secure for the rest of us.

  7. an employer should be allowed to fire and employee for anything they want. the unions, much like religions, have limited the freedom of organizations to operate as they see fit. of course what he said is protected free speech. he can stand on the corner or post on facebook that he hates blacks, gays, jews, christians, muslims, obama, bush, whatever, all he wants. but if his boss hears it and feels it is detrimental to the company/organization s/he should have the freedom to fire the person. look at hank williams jr. espn fired him. not a union gig, no lawsuit to follow. just like a school district should be allowed to say to a teacher, no you can’t take two weeks off in the middle of the school year, it is detrimantal to the students. or a store should be able to say, no you can’t wear that at work it is detrimental to our image.

  8. Ok if we use this as a code of conduct issue in conjunction with all public employees and private employees since their business could suffer, then the only people with freedom of speech are rich people who do not need jobs or who own the companies and people who do not work for a living. Thinking like this only restricts the workers of our society who have many beliefs. This is not a slippery slope this is the cliff from which we all plunge into only being able to give socially acceptable comments and opinions. Freedom of speech should not be restricted to only the rich and unemployed it should be respected by all. Look at this headline/link:

    http://www.bostonherald.com/news/regional/view.bg?articleid=1373223

    This principal is banning holidays and attempting to prevent celebrations due to her own beliefs. She will get away with it because to disagree with her would not be politically correct. However, if she was of the strong belief that U.S. Traditions made our country strong and tried to incentivize the celebration of such days she would, more than likely, be place upon administrative leave and possibly fired. Both views have equal merit but one view is not popular thus that speech would be stifled by a very vocal minority.

    I have another example but the posting of the second link caused it not to be placed for viewing so this is now in 2 posts

  9. Here is one more: I hope it does not cause the comment not to print:

    http://www.infowars.com/house-bill-would-criminalize-satire-of-tsa/

    Now I am not sure if it would or would not actually criminalize satire but it is one more step to the people on this forum not to be able to protest what you believe is unfair treatment of Muslims by the TSA. Why? because the bill is open to interruption by government lawyers and could be used to be equivocal to the Alien and Sedition acts of 1798 in response to critiques of this agency. How long ago was it that a prosecutor in Louisiana used the law against making weapons of mass destruction against a meth producer so as to put him in jail for the rest of his life. Seat belt laws were meant to save lives but now we use them to charge people with murder if the kid in the back seat slips his or hers off. Law after law is being twisted to the extent that I now doubt that any citizen can actually go a month without breaking some law and being subject to arrest. Drivers in DC going to jail over late registration. I was pulled over and I had not placed my most recent insurance card in my car. It was an oversight but the policeman made sure that I knew he could arrest me and impound my car but due to his benevolence he was not going to do so.

    Ok I am ranting but our freedoms are slipping away as our subjugation to authority increases. We need to protect the worst of us in order to keep our freedoms secure for the rest of us.

  10. The man who burned pages of the Koran also received $25,000 for pain and suffering. His right to free speech was defended by the ACLU because among other things he was acting on his free time. Here is a comment made by the ACLU lawyer representing this man, it goes to the heart of the first amendment and the right to free speech.

    “Our government cannot pick and choose whose free speech rights are protected, based on whether or not they approve of the content of our statements or actions. This is the very essence of the First Amendment.”

    I think the same case can be made for the TSA worker should he be fired for comments he made when NOT on the job.

    http://hotair.com/greenroom/archives/2011/04/22/nj-transit-worker-who-burned-koran-rehiredthanks-to-aclu/

  11. Criley,
    The mass murderer in Norway, was influenced by anti-Muslim hate speech from American bloggers such as Pamella Geller and Robert Spencer.I’m not sure you really meant it when you said “We need to protect the worst of us in order to keep our freedoms secure for the rest of us.” He quoted them both many times to justify his actions. He believed what he was doing was right, killing ppl who support Palestinian Muslims (what did hitler get from it?).
    Freedom of speech should also not infringe upon other rights as well. The first Amendment rights also secures “freedom of religion.” If people like this exist in all work places, can Muslims in
    America practice their religion peacefully? There needs to be a balance. Same with employers and employees. Perhaps the employer does not like Muslims women wearing a headscarf. Which do you choose? His freedom of speech or her freedom of religion? One is following beliefs, the other won’t except the belief bcuz it ruins his image (and profit).
    Perhaps Americans decide they don’t want a Muslim do fly on a plane ever again. They are only concerned about their safety, but they think its ok to restrict freedoms for Muslims who are traveling. Do you agree with this, even though they have already gone through security (which has bcom almost perverted)?

  12. Although the e-mail was in poor taste,most of it was truthful. He should be protected under freedom of speech laws, you know, the law you keep trying to have dissolved when it comes to speaking the truth about islam, the law your OIC is desperately trying to eradicate? The truth should be a defense. What he does on his own time is his business as long as it isn’t illegal. Although I don’t agree with much of what he says, I support his freedom to say it.

  13. As a Muslim, I’m disappointed in this man’s firing. He has the right to say what he wishes on his own personal space and as he repeatedly said it has not affected his work or any of the Muslims that he sees at work.

    It’s sad to see these sort of things from Muslims in this country, because we speak so much about the religion of peace and the Prophet’s character as one that we should emulate. We forget the stories of grace and respect that he (Peace be Upon Him and his Family) showed to his most ardent enemies. We stoop to destroying the lives of Americans by ridding them of their livelihoods. Instead of CAIR trying so hard to destroy this man, they should have instead spent a little more time talking with him and trying to convince him that not all Muslims are terrorists and that not all deserve to die.

    I don’t think Islamophobia is a myth- I agree that this is a problem in our communities and our nation, but the way that we are dealing with it is unproductive and harmful. Look at Salim’s comment above. I’m going to assume Salim is a muslim. It disheartens me to see such vile unproductive comments like “Don’t worry about him, He is a looser, plus fat and ugly I guess even wowmen dont look at him. HE should be dieting instead of showing Hatred to Muslims.There are so many Muslim Doctors around Chicago. He might need to go to see one to get advise on how to reduce his Fat.” How is that helping to show that Muslims are people worth knowing and a religion worth respecting.

    As Muslims we don’t show ourselves to be the better men. Why should others respect us when we don’t respect ourselves. I know for a fact that many of these same Muslims who cry “Islamophobia!” rush quickly to attack their fellow Muslims who might not follow the same school of thought as them. America has a Islamophobia problem. It also has a Bad-Muslim problem too.

  14. People are influenced by many things beyond speech, and yes I support freedom of speech even when nuts use it do harm people. The man in Norway was one of those nuts. I am about changing peoples views through dialog. If you attempt to stifle views you do not like then people with those views will simply communicate with like minded people and the chance to intercede with those people are lost. You could even find its your views that are stifled. When you exchange ideas with a bigot it may seem you get no where, however, over time his or her views may change due to such interaction. Words and life experiences work together to form and change viewpoints. Engagement, not prohibition, is the key to gain understanding on all sides. We are working with many issues here with a couple of them being some people exploiting the issue to make money and gain influence. The other being that people are simply afraid, the actions they see in Muslim countries and the examples set by non peaceful Muslims are overwhelming people’s sense of fairness as they seek to protect their familys and country. They are not going to study Islam to better understand it but they will listen to people such as Geller as their words seem to be supported by the actions of Islamic Terrorists.

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