Controversial Western Washington University professor Perry Mills, who last year won an appeals court case against the school that suspended him, today lost the same battle before the state Supreme Court. Mills had been disciplined in 2006 for berating and demeaning students and colleagues, as well as for "off-color remarks" about colleagues, women, gay students, and minorities. The two-quarters suspension he received came during a closed meeting that should have been open to the public, he argued in his appeal. But the high court said Western followed the rules.
According to court records, faculty members feared Mills because he occasionally carried a registered firearm and large knife in the classroom; he also engaged in "belligerent rants about killing people who offended him."
A tenured theater professor, he was repeatedly warned to change. "Your behavior scares people," he was told in an official notice. "You know it. Your repeated need to express your desire to 'kill' people is not appropriate, and will stop . . ."
From Mills' web page, entitled 'have a nice day.'
Yet Mills subsequently told a female professor that "she had better keep her legs closed, because she could not be expected to teach students the same way she got her doctorate." He also called her a "bimbo" and a "slut" to her face and to his students.
Mills called another professor "just a stupid faggot," and when the professor complained, Mills called him "Precious." He told an administrative assistant she was "a stupid bitch" and "white trailer trash." He called an overweight student a "'400-pound canary who warbles nothingness' and makes him sick."
But he had his defenders, who agreed Mills should have had a public disciplinary hearing. Mills claimed the session violated the Washington Constitution, which says "Justice in all cases shall be administered openly, and without unnecessary delay."
But the high court, contrary to an earlier appeals ruling that could have given Mills a new WWU hearing, said the university followed the Faculty Handbook, and the constitutional provision didn't apply to administrative sessions.