TSA officer fired over Facebook posts

November 15, 2011 4:23:04 PM PST
A Transportation Security Administration officer at O'Hare Airport has been fired for posting anti-Muslim, racist statements on his Facebook page.

In this Intelligence Report: TSA officials in Chicago tell the I-Team that veteran officer Roy Egan has been terminated. Officer Egan was a baggage screener at O'Hare almost since the beginning of TSA after 9/11. Now, Egan has resumed his rants on Facebook, the same venue that cost him his government job.

Egan was stationed at O'Hare for nine years. On his Facebook page, he identified himself as an employee of the Homeland Security Department, and said, "I look for bad stuff going on airplanes." Under that heading, Egan wrote things such as: "Islam a cult that glorifies death...and a filthy religion" and that Muslims should be exterminated.

When asked if he had made the posts in question, Egan told the I-Team, "It was common stuff I picked off the web and made comments on."

I-TEAM: "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 said even this post -- "Does anything at all make you smile more than a Muslim burning by his own hateful hand?" -- did not hinder his job as a baggage screener, despite frequent criticism of ethnic profiling at TSA.

"It made me sick," said Ahmed Rehad of the Council On American-Islamic Relations.

Muslim-American leaders were quick to vilify Egan, who also took off after gays, Hispanics and blacks, including crude racial descriptions of President Barack Obama, the first lady and the attorney general, whom he said should "die tasting your own blood."

"I don't do anything against policy," Egan said to the I-Team. "I've never done anything against policy that I'm aware of."

But TSA officials apparently found Egan in violation of the agency's policy against such conduct -- on or off duty -- and have now fired him.

After locking his Facebook page for a time, Egan is now back in public view, stating recently that his writing was "taken out of context" and that he is "in no way a racist."

Egan claims to Facebook friends that his "personal life is in shambles," that he "spent a week in the hospital," and that he "cannot find an attorney to defend me."

Egan insists he was just exercising his freedom of speech on Facebook and wants a lawyer to take a 1st Amendment case for him.

Egan admits that he did post "nasty" comments about Islam and did call President Obama the "Muslim-in-chief" but suggests he is no hatemonger.


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