Member Commentary

MUFON Board of Directors Needs Some Backbone

TO: The Board of Directors, Mutual UFO Network, Inc. (29 Sep 99):
FROM: Larry W. Bryant

In a telephone conversation with me on Sept. 29, 1999, MUFON director Walt Andrus relayed to me certain (unnamed) MUFON Board members' expressions of concern, directed to him and to deputy director John Schuessler, about my latest (proposed) litigation project to raise the public's level of "UFO awareness" and to hold pertinent government officials accountable for the 50-year-old policy of official UFO secrecy.

Those expressions of concern have culminated in the apparently exasperated conclusion of "What's he [Bryant] going to do next!?"

Some weeks before Walt's call, I received a call from MUFON assistant state director Richard Lang, who also had voiced his concerns that my new project might cast him and/or MUFON in a bad light in his routine dealings with Virginia law-enforcement officials as regards MUFON investigation of UFO-encounter reports received from Virginians.

As I explained to Mr. Lang then, and to Walt today, I have refrained from using my capacity as a MUFON Board member to promote or otherwise add extra glitter to this project. And I reiterate to you all, now, my intention not to change that approach (unless, of course, the Board should decide that it desires to put its official, formal weight behind the project). This reflects exactly the same attitude I maintained back in July 1983 when I filed, not as a MUFON subscriber but as the CAUS Washington, D.C. Office director, a "Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus Extraterrestrial" in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. In all the subsequent publicity about that legal action, I duly refrained from referring to my MUFON subscribership. (I like to think that my careful handling of that case -- and of several FOIA-related cases -- figured prominently in the Board's offer to have me serve as MUFON director of governmental affairs.)

Well, just what does this apparently unnerving (to some Board members) project consist of? Simply stated, it bears the PROPOSED title of "Petition for Writ of Mandamus, for Mandatory Injunctive Relief, and for Declaratory Relief." When I can locate a local attorney to help me draft and file the petition, I plan to file it in the Circuit Court of Alexandria, Va. The petition's respondent will be the governor of Virginia, who has failed to acknowledge and to help repel the ongoing invasive activity being perpetrated by the (apparently alien) intelligence behind the reported "Flying Triangles" and UFO abductions.

This petition -- whose very process would help raise the body politic's UFO awareness (and activism) -- would naturally dovetail with, and complement, the legal action recently filed against the United States and the state of Arizona by Citizens Against UFO Secrecy, Inc., under terms of the U.S. Constitution's Article IV, Section 4 (which requires the federal government to protect the states from "invasion" -- one legal definition thereof being this: "Encroachment upon the rights of another").

My petition would call for the Virginia governor to fulfill his duty in protecting and defending Virginians' right to be let alone, their right to safety/security, their right to privacy, and their right to self-determination/independence -- all under terms of the Virginia constitution and applicable Virginia statutes. In this regard, please visit the website of to view my DRAFT of the several points of relief sought by the petition.

If in the future any of you Board members have further concerns about this project, please feel free to express them direct to me; you won't be hurting my feelings with any constructive criticism here. Naturally, I would prefer to have your (informed) support rather than your ill-informed (or out-of-hand) rejection of this latest project to shift the paradigm on how organized UFOlogy markets the evidence of UFO reality.

On another matter, Walt mentioned that some of you are reconsidering your YES vote on MUFON's support of the "UFO Ballot Initiative" project. May I point out that this flip-flop in the project's infancy could damage the leadership image of MUFON?

Thank you for this chance to allay your concerns -- and to invite your continued, open, fair-minded dialogue on the issues highlighted by these projects. -- Larry W. Bryant


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