On June 12, 2014, the New York State Intelligence Center (a Fusion Center) issued a Counter Terrorism Bulletin in which they identified the New York State Oath Keepers organization as a ‘far-right extremist group and/or a threat to law enforcement personnel.’ On August 11, 2014 an again on September 23, 2014, the New York Oath Keepers sent out correspondence to the Governor the Superintendent of the New York State Police and the Albany NY Office of the FederalBureau of Investigation clearly pointing out the New York State Intelligence Center’s faulty logic and misstatements of fact that were used to politically demonize the New York Oath Keeper organization whose clearly stated non-partisan mission is to simply encourage our Military and Law Enforcement Officers, and others, to honor their oaths to the United States and New York State Constitutions.
In our pursuit of truth and fairness, we previously requested that the officials at the NYSIC issue a public correction, indicating their error in classifying New York Oath Keepers as a far-right extremist group and/or a threat to law enforcement. We also requested a meeting with the Governor and/or the Superintendent of the New York State Police and officials from other NYSIC member organizations, so we could address any misinformation and misunderstandings about the New York Oath Keepers’ mission. The purpose of the meeting was to see this extremely prejudicial “far-right extremist” label and other inaccuracies retracted and the necessary corrections made to the Bulletin.
On October 24, 2014, several executive staff members of the New York Oath Keepers met with representatives of the New York State Police and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (as members of the New York State Intelligence Center) at Troop “G” headquarters of the New York State Police, located at 760 Troy Schenectady Road, Latham, NY 12110. We specifically addressed all the relevant issues and answered all the questions asked of us in an honest and forthright manner. At the conclusion of the meeting, which lasted about two hours, we left reassured that neither the representatives of the New York State Police nor the Federal Bureau of Investigation considered the New York Oath Keepers to be a ‘far-right extremist group and/or a threat to law enforcement.’ We asked that the bulletin in question be withdrawn, or amended and that correspondence be prepared and sent to us acknowledging that an error was made by the NYSIC when they publicly identified the New York Oath Keepers to be a ‘far-right extremist group and/or a threat to law enforcement.’
Both the United States Constitution and the New York State Constitution clearly enumerate that ‘We the People’ have a right to petition the government or any department thereof, and we have honorably done so for this redress of our grievances. We know that the people of New York State understand that those of us fighting to insure that both the federal and state constitutions are adhered to deserve, at the very least, a response from federal and state agencies in correcting this unjust characterization of New York Oath Keepers.
“G. Information Quality Assurance:
1. The NYSIC will make every reasonable effort to ensure that information sought or retained is derived from dependable and trustworthy sources of information. NYSIC personnel will take appropriate steps to ensure that information is accurate; current; complete, contextual; and merged with other information about the same individual or organization only when NYSIC Criminal Intelligence and Analysis System (CIAS) Records Merging standards have been met.
2. At the time of retention in the system, the information will be labeled regarding its level of quality (accurate, complete, current, verifiable, and reliable).
3. The NYSIC will investigate, in a timely manner, alleged errors and deficiencies (or refer them to the originating agency) and will correct, delete, or refrain from using protected information found to be erroneous or deficient.
4. The labeling of retained information will be reevaluated when new information is gathered that has an impact on the validity and reliability of previous information.
5. The NYSIC will make every reasonable effort to ensure that information will be corrected, deleted from the system, or not used when the NYSIC learns, through conducting periodic data quality reviews, that the information is erroneous, misleading, obsolete, or otherwise unreliable; the source of the information did not have authority to gather the information or to provide the information; or the source used prohibited means to gather the information, EXCEPT when the source was not acting as the agent of a sworn law enforcement officer.
6. Originating agencies external to the NYSIC are responsible for the quality and accuracy of the data accessed by or provided to the NYSIC. The NYSIC will advise the originating agency’s privacy official, if one exists, or the contact person, in writing, if data is alleged, suspected, or found to be inaccurate, incomplete, or out of date.
7. The NYSIC will use timely written or electronic notification to inform recipient agencies when information previously provided to the recipient agency is deleted or changed by the NYSIC. For example, information affecting the rights of an individual that has been determined to be erroneous, outdated, or taken out of context must be corrected.”
We are an organization consisting of thousands of active duty and retired military, police and fire personnel, who have at one or more times in our lives taken an Oath to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States of America. These Oaths do not expire and we take them with the utmost seriousness. Whether our fellow citizens have sworn a similar Oath or not, many of them have told us that they are in agreement on these points, and understand just how important this issue is to us, as well as to tens of thousands of other New Yorkers.
At the very least, we deserve the decency of a reply from the NYSIC. Their own policy statement concerning the gathering of intelligence information and quality assurance requires corrections to be made to faulty information to be followed up by the sending of correspondence to the injured parties indicating that an error had been made. Over three months have passed since our meeting with representatives of the New York State Intelligence Center and still no reply, not even a phone call.
We are again asking Governor Andrew Cuomo and member agencies of the NYSIC to see that the good name of the New York Oath Keepers is restored, which has been wrongly defamed by this seemingly capricious and arbitrary NYSIC conclusion.
The NYSIC sources, as indicated by footnotes in the police bulletin, was based to a large degree on false information and unreasonable logic supplied mainly by politically biased organizations including the Southern Poverty Law Center, which in 2014 was fired and discredited by the FBI as a legitimate and accurate intelligence source.
We are asking Governor Andrew Cuomo to step up for Liberty, Justice and the Bill of Rights and to support the New York Oath Keepers as we follow up with the NYSIC to help resolve this matter.
For the Republic,
John Wallace, President, New York Oath Keepers (US Army-NYARNG; Lt. Col. NYSP Ret)
Dan Devlin, Vice President, New York Oath Keepers (MP US Army; PHX, AZ PD)
Frank Morganthaler, Vice President, New York Oath Keepers (USMC; Lt. FDNY Ret)
John Mahoney, Special Advisor, New York Oath Keepers (Sgt NYPD Ret; USMC; Special Forces Trainer, US Army Ret)
– See more at: http://www.libertynewsonline.com/article_301_36905.php