Written on Wednesday, April 13, 2011 by Wesley Strackbein
On April 10, Bob Seashols, a Coordination Center Officer for the Transportation and Security Administration (TSA) at the Richmond International Airport (RIC) and an administrator for Atheists United’s Facebook page, took part in a coordinated effort to populate pornographic images, extreme profanity, and sexually explicit anti-Christian hate-speech on the Facebook page of Ken Ham, an internationally known Christian ministry leader who serves as president of Answers in Genesis-U.S (AiG) and the popular Creation Museum, located near Cincinnati, Ohio.
Sunday afternoon visitors to Mr. Ham’s “public person” Facebook site found pages of sexually explicit commentary aimed at mocking him and deriding Jesus Christ and the Christian faith. The Internet-based Facebook assault, directed from four different Facebook accounts, involved pornographic and sadomasochistic imagery.
When interviewed about his role in what he described as a “blitz” against Ken Ham, Seashols stated: “Somebody posted . . . an asinine statement that Ken Ham made [on an Atheist forum], and that raised our hackles. . . . It was retaliation.”
Much of TSA representative Seashols’ comments on Ken Ham’s Facebook page and those offered in the interview with him were so obscene and profane as to be unprintable, but involved numerous expletives and sexually perverse commentary directed at the Trinity, as well as offensive language directed at Ken Ham himself. Seashols referred to Mr. Ham as the “consummate con-man” and called AiG’s Ark Encounter project a “[expletive withheld] scar on humanity.”
When questioned why he posted such sexually explicit comments, Mr. Seashols brazenly replied: “Because I can. . . . I can say whatever the h— I want to say about anyone I want to. . . . I’m not breaking any law.”
The coordinated Facebook attack occurred at about the same time that Mr. Ham was scheduled to give a Sunday message in Dayton, Ohio, on the defense of the Christian faith. Ham was notified of the abuse of his public Facebook page and promptly took steps to remove the objectionable posts.
AiG is a ministry with an outreach to hundreds of thousands of children, some of whom may have access to Mr. Ham’s Facebook page. It is not known how many children, if any, were exposed to the explicit material.
Mr. Seashols tells us that he has two children of his own, girls who are 10 and 6 years old, respectively. He admitted that he “make[s] sure to keep track of where they go [on the Internet].” Yet when pressed if he would be upset if his daughters stumbled upon the kind of explicit images and commentary he aided in posting to Mr. Ham’s public page, he backtracked: “Not really. When your mother calls you a [expletive withheld] and your father calls you a [expletive withheld] they are words, nothing more than words. Words have never hurt anybody.”
TSA representative Seashols actively participates in several Atheist groups on Facebook, including the National Atheist Party, and he is one of several official administrators for Atheists United’s Facebook page.
Professionally, Mr. Seashols has worked for the TSA since 2006 and serves as a Coordination Center Officer (COO) at Richmond International Airport (RIC). Some TSA agents have become infamous for their actions of late, both on and off duty. Seashols admitted that the TSA has a reputation “worse than the IRS,” yet he stated: “I was not on the clock” when the obscene images and comments were posted on Ham’s public Facebook page. “It happened on my time in my house. . . . It’s my private life.”
According to TsaGov.’s website, TSA employee Seashols is expected to demonstrate the following core competencies, among others, as a COO: “…creates a culture that fosters high standards of ethics; behaves in a fair and ethical manner toward others and demonstrates a sense of corporate responsibility and commitment to public service.”
When asked about the heightened expectation that public servants act ethically in their private life, Seashols commented that what he did “is a non-issue for the TSA. . . . [While off duty], I can say anything I d— well please.”
Officials at Richmond’s TSA office declined to comment on Mr. Seashols’ behavior, pending further investigation.
Another TSA security officer who works at Richmond’s airport recently made the news when it was learned that the TSA insisted that RIC issue its highest-level security clearance to the agent who has a felony conviction for robbery. Appeals made by Jon Mathiasen, RIC’s president and CEO, for the airport not to grant the security clearance to the TSA employee under scrutiny were initially rebuffed by TSA officials in Washington, with the TSA threatening the airport with unspecified consequences for non-compliance. When Rep. Eric I. Cantor (R-7th, VA) intervened with the TSA on the issue, they changed course and accepted the resignation of the convicted felon.
Seashols’ profane tirade on Sunday against Ken Ham on his public Facebook page raises questions once again regarding the integrity of some of the agents that the TSA is employing.
In commenting on the recent Facebook incident involving Seashols, a representative from AiG stated: “AiG will be turning the information over to the proper authorities to investigate whether or not an actual crime took place.”
Wesley Strackbein is the co-founder of TsaTyranny.com, an effort designed to expose TSA abuses, to educate the public with relevant articles and videos regarding the TSA, and to mobilize opposition to the TSA’s overreaching policies.