Will Delta Ban The Man Who Killed Bin Laden?

Filed Under: Delta

Update: Yep, Delta has indeed banned the man who killed Bin Laden.

Robert J. O’Neill, the former US Navy SEAL who killed Osama Bin Laden in a 2011 raid, posted on Twitter today from his Delta Air Lines flight. He simply took a selfie while not wearing a mask, and posted it with the caption “I’m not a p*ssy.” He posted this early this morning, and just now deleted it, about five hours after it was posted.

Delta has really stepped up enforcement of its mask policy in recent weeks, and the airline claims it has around 150 people on its no-fly list for refusing to wear masks. This shouldn’t even be about whether or not one thinks masks are important, but rather Delta has a clearly published policy, and he’s choosing to ignore it.

And seriously, is this what we’re equating to “bravery” nowadays? He’s “not a p*ssy” because he choose not to wear a mask on a plane? What’s next, not wearing a seatbelt, because you’re “not a p*ssy,” or what?

It’ll be interesting to see if Delta adds O’Neill to the no-fly list, given his clear disregard for the company’s policy.

Thanks for your service, sir. But in this particular situation I’m going to have to agree with this doctor:

What do you guys think — will Delta ban him?

  1. Imagine being such a pussy that you refuse to wear a mask because someone else might think you’re less of a man.

  2. Chris says:
    August 19, 2020 at 2:33 pm

    Typical military…

    It’s not ‘typical military’, it’s typical right wing disregard for both science and society. Masks are about other people, not the wearer. I hope Delta bans him, as they would anyone else who disregards their mask policy.

  3. Ban him. Of course. Rules is rules. They apply to everyone. If they don’t, it’s just theater, you have no credibility, and you’re a hypocrite. It’s not complicated.

    Thanks for your service, but GTF off the plane.

  4. @ Ben — Of course Delta should and will ban him. He has done nothing that gives him permission to not wear a mask on a Delta flight. I mean, is he allowed to rob a bank now without punishment?

  5. I don’t like those who feel that they’re above everyone else and believe they should have special privileges just because of their status, etc.

  6. Anybody on an airplane right now that doesn’t absolutely have to be should be banned from Delta and all other airlines for LIFE. Taking trips during a pandemic is selfish and puts others at risk.

    Oh wait, we’re willing to overlook that? Ok then.

  7. No one is above the law (or rules and regulations in this case). May have done something heroic in the past, but his actions and words speak louder than his past.

    Ban him.

  8. Ban him, but I don’t agree with or see why you had to post a Tweet from a fake doctor who has sexually assaulted people.

  9. If they do stand by their policy and decide to ban him, conservatives might well retaliate by cancelling Delta… I only see a win here

  10. Was he unwilling to wear a mask on the flight? Or did he simply remove it momentarily to snap a picture and put it back on, which the story suggests? If the latter how is that more dangerous than someone who uses a mask but removes it to drink or eat? I understand it is an arrogant act, but it would hardly be threatening, or worse than others who are consuming food or beverages in the flight. Context matters.

  11. I hope Dr. Eugene will just shut up.

    I hope all of you, before you post and jump to judge … Have you ever went through something as though as he did? Do you know his mental condition?

  12. He killed Bin Laden. That doesn’t give him the right to kill fellow passengers on a plane, which is what he risks if he’s asymptomatically infected.

  13. The Big 4 airlines should all ban him. He should have learned how to follow orders from his time in service.

  14. Of course Delta should ban him. I’m sure he wears a seatbelt. I’m sure he keeps his guns at home in a safe. I’m sure he likes his food prepared at a restaurant by people who wash their hands. Wearing a mask so this all ends is a sign of strength. idiots.

  15. Agree with @Kaa63. Delta can’t and won’t ban him unless the flight crew wrote him up for refusing to wear a mask when told to do so. Even if he took it off to take a social media picture, I’m guessing that if a flight attendant told him he had to put it on, he “followed orders.” So not really different than the myriad people who take masks off for extended eating/drinking.

    Incidentally they serve you water on every flight and you can basically leave your mask off for most of the flight while drinking your water, so I would say enforcement is pretty lax after boarding. Wearing masks does slow the spread compared to doing nothing, but clearly it’s not perfect. Delta is not going to start banning people over social media posts like this.

  16. If he is such a brave big man, did he also not wear body armor during his missions? Or was he such a tough guy he would flaunt military regulation and openly ask for a court martial? Big on bravery, not so much on brains.

  17. For God’s sake he took the mask off for a picture. He was social distancing at the time as well. Do you think that the surgical mask somehow magically keeps in all the particles? If he had Covid and wore a mask on a plane and you were seated next to him are you somehow protected on a 2 hour flight?

    Even the CDC guidelines say that you need to wear the mask if you can’t social distance. Further they ask if you have been in contact with someone who was diagnosed with Covid and were face to face for more than 10 minutes. Yes, you should wear a mask. Taking it off for a moment to take a picture when no one is close would have no affect. Keep up the paranoia though.

  18. This from a guy who’s life depended on working as and being part of a team.

    Such a ‘f*ck you’ to all of us, really. Sad.

  19. I guess all the people who are supporting him are the same ones supporting Trump. You’re allowed to say that sort of sexist stuff still nowadays?

  20. All of you are a bunch of p*****s!

    He probably just trolled everybody. There’s no indication that he refused to wear a mask for the duration of the flight so it’s possible he just took a photo for the tweet. Have some respect for the military and the man that killed Bin Laden.

    However, if he refused to wear the mask for the duration of the flight and was warned by flight attendants than he should be banned as that is the rule of Delta

  21. This is really disappointing. He’s an American hero that we should all be grateful for his service, yet this is a very stupid decision on his part.

  22. @Z-Man
    Unless killing Bin Laden gave him COVID immunity, he lost my respect, troll or not.
    I thought one followed rules when in the military.

  23. He’s actually not a real doctor. Seems like a troll. Washed out of residency, not licensed to practice.

  24. @Ksa63

    Whether he took the mask off the entire flight or just for the snap is irrelevant. Taking it off for food and drinks is a necessity; taking it off to snap for social media (and promoting the dangerous idea that people should not wear masks) is not a necessity, it’s reckless.

    Ban the idiot.

  25. Pretty much half the team on that op claimed to kill Bin Laden. If he took it off to take the pic to look tough and then put it back on, he is an even bigger bitch than I suspected. If he took it off for any length of time, he just said f u to the entire plane. Not a move that someone who swore to protect civilians should be overly proud of. The guy is no hero, he had a job to do as part of a team and managed to come back alive. The heros are the ones that dont make it back. Ban him

  26. @Mike C
    So why not make masks permanent?

    Will you wear your mask forever when you are in public? We know that people have, are, and will continue to die from opportunistic infections as they have a compromised immune system. Such, even after COVID these people will be at risk.

    In this case, should we all not be required to mask up to protect these venerable people?

  27. None of you know the before or after of the pic. Typical social media tough guys.

    We all know the real heroes (you) stay home watching Netflix, eating delivery & commenting on people who live in the real world.

    Try not to break your arms patting yourselves on the back.

    When you go to bed tonight ask yourself if you’re actually proud of the life you’ve lived. Pretty sure I know how he should answer.

    Even if he’s wrong in this instance, are any of you beyond reproach? Perfect in every way I’m sure.

    Yeah… Be proud of yourselves.

  28. “He killed Bin Laden does not give the right to kill other passengers”. Delta, please banned this dumb ASS

  29. IF, he is not wearing the Mask at all, Ban him, BUT, if he just finished a meal maybe, and took the pic before putting his mask back on, we don’t know. Not sure what a pussy means to him, but let’s hear him explain himself first.

  30. More importantly he had a pretty lucrative speaking career and was living a life not often afforded (or sought) by ex Seals who performed valiantly and quietly entered civilian life. He pretty much blew that. Banning on Delta is the least of his problems now. It’s incredible to me that people who find an angle and manage to make a level of success out of it just throw it all away with idiocy like this.

  31. He is 100% correct! He is not a pussy, pussys are a thing of beauty and wonderment, he is an asshole.

  32. He won’t be banned although he should be. If there was no incident reported at the time, nothing will happen. DL likely does not have a room full of social media monitors tracing down offenders.

  33. So he served the United States military …and now he gets to flaunt his arrogance? Why should he get special exceptions? This is the very problem in this country….. He should be treated with the discipline that any other person would get if they were in non-compliance. he is not above the law..

  34. Love all the judgements people that want to ban him and assume he is a conservative (as are the vast many of militias well as corporate executives).

    Get over your selves. So you have never done anything that Wasn’t in compliance with the rules? If so you must lead a pretty dull life.

    Problem w blogs (and reason TPG eliminated comments) is there are plenty of keyboard warriors who would never have the stones to say something in person.

  35. It still amazes me when certain people think there are some heorics involved with not wearing masks. That is not being brave, that is being reckless. Same as driving dunk as hell, speeding, wearing slippers and not wearing seat belts at the same time. And if they can’t tell the difference, then they are stupid too.
    Also – if someone needed to overpower a mask, one of the smallest and lightest object anyone will carry, to prove they are brave and fearless, then count me as convinced that they are indeed “pussy”

  36. Please PM who cares about his mental and what he went through that was his choice. No one put a gun to his head and said join the military.

  37. I don’t care either way, but for clarification did he refuse to wear the mask when confronted by a Delta employee or just snap a selfie which doesn’t take longer? People snacking and drinking water would have theirs off much longer. If Delta’s policy is that they will ban those that REFUSE to wear a mask and he was never confronted by a Delta employee that is their out and they won’t ban him.

  38. What a sad state of affairs.
    Looks like the fame’s taken a toll on him. He’s allegedly 43. And married to a 30 year old.

  39. I find this American “Thank you for your service” more annoying and a crock of shit than anything else. If we used this in Australia you’d be told to F… Off.

  40. Heroes don’t flaunt. Ban him and show him how respect works. He was supposed to have learned that while in the military, but apparently it did not take.

  41. OK. Lucky generated a lot of click and traffic for no news. You don’t even know whether he took the mask for 2 minutes just to take the picture to post on his twitter. Note that “a close contact is defined as someone who has been within 6 feet of an infected person for more than 15 minutes when either person has not been wearing a face covering. ”
    If O’Neill is banned from flying DL for life, how about banning anyone with 0.08% (0.04% for commercial license) alcohol level from driving for life? Both actions (not wearing mask or drinking alcohol) do put someone else life in danger. And no using cars or Uber for life if you don’t wear the seat belt once.
    Because O’Neill published on Twitter, go and tweet back – this would be the most appropriate response.

  42. Don’t ban him, but rather jail him and not for not wearing a mask but rather for murder. Osama bin Laden was never convicted in any court of law and under US law one is innocent until proven guilty. All speak of police brutality in the US but nothing is worse than military brutality and this is a great example.

  43. @Alan: Great, great point. I’m sure you would agree we should also throw in jail the President and Vice President that ordered Osama Bin Laden’s murder: Barack Obama and Joe Biden.

  44. We might need to know more about what happened after this photo was snapped and the tweet sent before all the outraged condemnations in these replies are justified.

    If there are any virologists on these posts, is it really possible to get enough of a viral load of the virus from one pax on even an hours long flight for the average person on that flight wearing a mask sitting even one row behind this rule-breaker to get infected?

    Ben, please post an update on this if there should be one from DL whether regarding enforcement of DL’s policy in this instance of noncompliance or his compliance when requested by the cabin crew to don his mask. Thanks

  45. From Inside Flyer:


    as this page doesn’t seem to allow posting a URL….

  46. Don’t surprise me, why Americans specially soldiers are not very welcome in other countries if there is no money in between.

  47. I’m more outraged by the doctor sticking his nose into it with such a disgusting post. I would fear any technology, company or medicine practiced by such an unstable person.

    The hype and alarmism about coronavirus is ridiculous. I don’t see a lot of real science. I see political propagandists in the form of liberal academics and health care workers pushing their agenda. We would all be sealed in our homes if it were up to “scientists” and the “health” officials.

  48. Our Military is comprised of all types of people, of members of all political parties, of all types of science based or science denying people, of all types of stalwart consistent men & women and all types of extraordinarily heroic men & women. And, of all types of men & women who follow orders in dangerous situations based upon intel & science: necessary to yield a successful mission and not a crap shoot mission.

    READERS: It IS wrong to brush ALL Military people with the same brush of odium that can be brushed on Mr. O’Neill, in this reported No-Mask Apotheosis record. If true, he should be banned for LIFE! <or a defined life of X number of years due to stupidity)

    But, please do not think HIS response to be a Military response; it isn't. Nothing in America at the moment is, sadly, a true National response; our Country is too fractured at the moment.

    Mr. O'Neill: thank you for your service (you can thank me too), but your time is up:
    follow current CDC and Airline rules, or shut TFU.

    Some in this comment thread have said to "lock you up"; not sure its legal on any level I know of at the moment, perhaps sadly. Unfortunately an UN – CHRISTIAN response is the fact that the most that science believers can hope for is that you return home and spread the infection; totally un-Christian I agree, BUT it IS consistent with your presented belief system! So, spread your belief! Spread it widely!

    Mr. O’Neill, really – thank your for your service; but your time is up. Now: STFU. Wear the mask!

    Mr. O’Neill: military duty AND civic duty is the same: when did you forget this?
    Protect the Nation!

  49. Delta shouldn’t ban him for the Tweet, of course.

    I imagine a flight attendants, if he was not wearing a mask, would have instructed him repeatedly to put it on. If he didn’t comply, or momentarily complied until no one was looking, then yes they should ban him.

    Honestly, the airlines should all pool their no-fly lists, such that people who have refused to comply with the requirement to wear a mask simply can’t fly.

    It doesn’t matter if he killed bin Laden.

  50. @Charlie don’t you like cesspools? What if we throw in some miles for signing up for credit cards?

  51. @Jeffrey Chang
    “In this case, should we all not be required to mask up to protect these venerable people?”
    You know, if all of us wearing masks habitually when on public transit or in large crowds (like they did/do in many parts of Asia, even pre-covid) means I get fewer colds every year, that I am open to it. I f***** hate getting sick and masks are at best a minor inconvenience in comparison.

  52. The guy is an arrogant prick. The fact that he is running around telling people he killed Bin Laden tells you all you need to know about this clown. He isn’t a quiet professional. Most of those guys never talk about the work they did, but he needs to be in the limelight. This is just another example of how selfish he is. He isn’t the one at risk by not wearing the mask. He is the one putting other people at risk by his refusal to wear the mask. What a loser. Delta should ban him to send a message, which is the rules apply to everybody. Of course we all know Trump will somehow try to retaliate against Delta in order to whip up hysteria. This country continues to embarrass.

  53. This comment section just proves how toxic the internet has become. It’s all about ad hominem these days and jumping to conclusions.

  54. Rogue behavior – Such a sad reflection on our modern day SEAL teams! This selfish ass! Others skimming from the reparations fund and murder a Green Beret because he wants no part of it and will expose them! One butchers a 15 year old boy with a k life. His colleagues turn him in and our President pardons him

  55. On his twitter account he posted—
    Robert J. O’Neill
    @mchooyah 7h
    I didn’t delete my tweet. My wife did.
    At least his wife has common sense..why is she even married to this coward?

  56. He should be treated the same way anyone else who didn’t follow the requirement to wear a mask. His efforts previously as a Navy Seal do not exempt him from policies enacted to make everyone safer!

  57. Regarding the use of “pussy” as some sort of negative slander:

    As Betty White said, “If you wanna be tough, grow a vagina. Those things can take a pounding.”

    Maybe he should “grow some balls” and wear a mask since that is the rule on the flight.

    Why is it even ok for his use of the term “pussy”? I am sure he uses many other terms that try to infer “less than” status.

  58. Ben, I love your blog, but I really think you should remove the tweet from Eugene Gu.
    He sexually assaulted his former partner, used a fake Twitter account to harass her, and she had to get a restraining order against him after having been beaten by him.

  59. Will there be a post for JetBlue kicking a family off for a 2 year old not wearing a mask? Or just the posts that show the good?

  60. @flo – agreed

    While delta can do whatever they want, there is very little evidence masks besides n95 worn properly do anything to limit Covid-19 spread. Additionally, most spread requires significant close contact for extended periods of time and to be symptomatic. People acting like he’s killing everyone are ridiculous. Get over yourself. Masks barely decrease your risk. Staying at home, social distancing and good hygiene are your best bets to prevent Covid – not masks that have hole openings 30x the size of the virus. Stop acting like everyone who doesn’t do what you want them to do is the enemy.

  61. Kinda sad that this site has digressed to 80% of the posts about face masks. There’s nothing else happening in the aviation world?

  62. Is there a reason the photo heading the article is of a black man boarding a Delta plane? At its core, the post is about the privilege of a white man, but lures you in with a negative headline and the image of a black man. I couldn’t care less about banning the guy from Delta, but for someone who doesn’t click on the post, the photo+headline combination reinforces negative perceptions

  63. Ban him. Most military heros are humble and and not loudmouths like this guy who is just trying to make a political point. If he doesn’t wear his seatbelt, he will be ejected. (“But only pussies wear seatbelts”) He is in the same category as the drunks who fight with the cabin crew and put the other passengers at risk. . As far as the ‘PhD candidates” like Rob who offer their “expertise,”, why would I take my advice from a self styled expert offering cherry picked information (Fox News) that conflicts with the CDC. If you don’t want to wear a mask or wear a seatbelt, please stay home and don’t put other passengers at risk. They don’t care about your opinion.

  64. He actively promoted thst he wasnt wearing a mask , and advocated that those who do are pussies. Its a no brainer BAN FOR LIFE and not just Delta.

  65. It’s revealing about people that a large part of the US population who are anti-masks think that the masks are there to protect the wearer, when in fact, the masks are there so that the wearer’s snot and sneezes don’t travel as far.

    To say “not a p*ssy”, you’re effectively saying you don’t give a toss about everyone else when you instinctively cough or sneeze. In fact, the people wearing the masks are doing more protecting the people of the country than he’s doing right now. What he did in the past doesn’t give him an immunity for being inconsiderate now.

  66. Not a surprise, nearly every ex-military person I’ve met or dealt with at work has been super far right wing. Statistically, being far right means you’re more likely to think that this whole thing is a hoax, and when combined with the heavily documented fragile masculinity in the military, leads to things like this where not wearing a mask is considered ~~manly~~

    I would hope that being banned from Delta would lead him to some introspection and thought about what he did, but it’ll probably just be used as an excuse to go shoot someone.

  67. Assassinating someone, anyone, should not be license to disregard rules. He should be banned, if for no other reason than I would not want to get covid from him.

  68. Mike C says:
    August 19, 2020 at 2:41 pm
    Chris says:
    August 19, 2020 at 2:33 pm

    Typical military…

    It’s not ‘typical military’, it’s typical right wing disregard for both science and society. Masks are about other people, not the wearer. I hope Delta bans him, as they would anyone else who disregards their mask policy.


    Right!? The military actually teaches you the opposite of what this dude is doing. It teaches you the importance of rules and the importance of FOLLOWING those rules. If he were still active duty and he chose to not follow orders or adhere to the rules in place, he would be punished, court marshaled, regardless as his status!

    Don’t put this on the military Chris, Mike is right. There are tens of thousands of current and former military that would find this guy’s action dishonorable and definitely against the military code of conduct (I being one of those former veterans).

    Delta should absolutely ban this idiot, National Hero or not. The status he holds comes with responsibilities and expectations, if he does not honor them then he should receive the same action against him as anyone else. He is not above the law or above judgement just because of his former accomplishments.

  69. @Rob – you haven’t got a clue. The facts prove your opinions (and opinions is all they are) wrong. And if you hadn’t noticed – America has a big history of treating anyone who doesn’t do it the American way as the enemy. There’s little acceptance of something being different, the attitude is that if you’re not with us, you’re against us.

  70. Adrian – which “facts” prove me wrong? Dozens of cdc and WHO studies said masks were worthless Unless n95 Pre covid 19 for flu or cold; and no clinical trials have shown they help since. I’ll be happy for you to wait to show a real trial with any stats showing they help.

    But like I said, Delta – as a private company – can do what they want. Just get off your high horse. This character assassination over differences of opinion in public discourse must stop or we are headed towards civil war 2

  71. @David – of course I would agree that Obama and Biden should be locked away as well as many others like W Bush and Cheney. It is a real shame that the only candidate to even talk about ending regime change wars was smeared by Hillary Clinton and no one stood up for her. I cannot imagine anyone voting for Joe and the Ho but we know there will be many who will.

  72. The airlines should share their do not fly lists with each other, these people can walk to their destination

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