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What Others Are Saying

  • Problematic notice by PSU
    By A Perspective from Portland, Oregon. A commentary. April 26, 2012, 12:29pm (link)

    Unknown said...
    You are correct to question the veracity of this notice. I was a grad student at PSU school of social work and a professor who had successfully targeted me for removal because of slander she heard about me did something similar. She played up that she thought I would be dangerous because I was "verbally threatening". The only threats made were of legal action should they continue to harass and intimidate me through slander and defamation. They used the school police and email system to ensure that nobody would come to my aid or be available as witnesses to the slander they committed. They sent an even more vague email that simply stated I had "taken actions against" the school. I had filed a grievance against a professor for a legitimate reason and was appealing to the grievance committee. There was no other "action" taken than what is rightfully mine under their own policies. They were doing what is called "mobbing".
    May 1, 2012 4:41 AM

  • Portland State University suspends graduate student who was reported to have made violent threats against faculty
    Published: Thursday, April 26, 2012, 10:21 PM
    Updated: Thursday, April 26, 2012, 11:15 PM
    Maxine Bernstein, The Oregonian By Maxine Bernstein, The Oregonian (link)

    Hey.....anyone know what he actually said??

    It was not a criminal matter as he was not arrested.

    What EXACTLY were the "threats"???

    What a load of cowardly crap!

    I do not think I have ever seen such a hatchet job done on anyone outside of red scare era newsreels.

    If he wasn't angry before this he should be now.

    We have private accusations that are hidden from us, as are the accusers. Humiliation by the college the police and this newspaper, essentially labeling him as a psychopathic killer ready to do so at any moment. Unfair and what has to be illegal searches of his home and life and I don't know what other kinds of humiliations he must have been subjected to in this process which he cooperated with fully.

    Now this man is a pariah, his life on hold and all of it based on anonymous accusations, by anonymous people! ALERT- I think China may have already won.

    I hope he sues everyone into oblivion.

    Some things you might consider finding out, asking and answering Ms. Bernstein;

    *What did he allegedly say?

    *What was the context of that conversation?

    *Were the people who reported these alleged comments mature and smart enough to distinguish if he were venting, being hyperbolic or otherwise letting go of some anger?

    *What did these reporters have to gain by getting him removed, as they must have known would happen?

    *How is it a college is operating at such a low level of civil rights consideration? Seriously an accusation gets this mans life destroyed? No due process no nothing all based in an imagined fear. How is it you don't even approach that fact in this article??

    *What effort did the school make to be sure these allegations have some merit and this man was not being harassed or abused by these accusers before they destroyed his life?

  • Was Portland State right in expelling student as safety risk? The student says no; the university says yes
    Published: Wednesday, July 25, 2012, 7:40 PM Updated: Wednesday, July 25, 2012, 9:35 PM
    Bryan Denson, The Oregonian By Bryan Denson, The Oregonian(link)

    It's not fair for The Oregonian to name Mr. Liu but not his accuser. Those who know the accuser should at least be able to consider her credibility in judging the allegations (especially while Mr. Liu's reputation is being permanently destroyed beyond all recognition). The Oregonian needs to just report the facts and stop filtering information based on subjective value judgments about whether it's good or bad for the public to know something relevant to the story.
    professorwho, The kid and AbbyNormal like this.

    The kid:
    The accuser's name should be made public. It's not right to be free to make false reports and then hide in anonymity. PSU is enabling an unbalanced and racist system.

    I think PSU overstepped with the expulsion. The steps they took to ASSESS the threat were reasonable but once Mr. Liu was evaluated and cleared @ OHSU, they should have allowed him to continue as a student.

    Assess the perceived threat. Make your decisions based on the assessment of that threat.

    But PSU made its decision based on hearsay and testimony from a fellow student, I don't see how that stands up against a 6 day professional mental health evaluation.

    professorwho, NotUrFool and AbbyNormal like this.

    Sounds like a false arrest and a false police report. No evidence to support any legal action against Liu. This is the not the movie Minority Report and there isn't a Pre-Crime Division.

    Just because you are afraid of firearms, you can't go around locking up every Asian gun owner. Even mindless liberals (redundant) can understand that. (Doesn't anyone remember that the VTech shooter was an out and out nutball?).

    So I suspect that this fellow's civil rights have been violated - one lawsuit. And I suspect that Portland Police made a false arrest (wonder if they took his guns too?) - another lawsuit. Liu needs to get a real lawyer and get to work.

    And lastly, there should be charges against the folks who fingered Liu (false report) and another lawsuit for slander.

    The takeaway is that you can't assume a black man jogging in a neighborhood is running from a crime and you can't assume that every Asian male with guns is a Virginia Tech shooter.

    professorwho, NotUrFool and The kid like this.

    The kid:
    The entire concern here is based solely on what one person said about Liu. This concerns me and, it should concern anyone who could fall victim to a false report. I have been a criminal and non-criminal investigator for nearly 2 decades. I have seen a substantial number of cases that are falsely reported. There are lots of reasons people make false reports. Liu got a clean bill of mental stability from OHSU. I used to work at OHSU and I can tell you that 6 days as a voluntary patient is short. The fact that Liu cooperated with such a process speaks to his credibility. The fact that there was no evidence of any threats other than the word of one woman that sent Liu an email at 3am that he didn't see because he was sleeping and therefore didn't have time to respond to is a concern. Why would she send him an email if she was so concerned about an imminent threat to public safety? It makes no sense. She would have called the police ASAP if she was really concerned. It also makes no sense that he's being expelled from PSU because of one person's word with absolutely NO other evidence. An expulsion on his record will leave a lasting mark on him, his ability to go to other schools and his ability to earn the kind of living that he might have otherwise. Sure, PSU can choose to do whatever they decide, but that doesn't excuse them from a civil suit for damages as a result of their decision.

    Knee Jerk:
    For everyone that has referenced the VT shootings as a comparison to Mr. Liu's situation, please stop. Being that I live in the area (VA), and received much better reporting than those of you in Oregon, I can say that the only similarities are that both people owned guns and both were Asian. The VT shooter had a long history of documented mental illness. There were numerous reports by faculty and students about how uncomfortable they were with him in class. He was a recluse, showed disturbing behavior as early as his days at Westfield Highschool, and there was more than one request to have him removed from classes. He also should have never been able to purchase weapons based on his mental diagnosis and history.

    To say PSU did its due diligence to avoid harm to others as well as lawsuits is ridiculous. VT faced; and lost, numerous suits b/c of their inaction to a number of complaints and concerns, as well as not providing proper warning and notification to those in danger after the shootings began. VT failed to provide proper, campus wide warnings in the two hour gaps between shootings, that could have saved lives.

    PSU could have done a number of things to properly resolve the situation without rushing to judgement. First and foremost, the department head could have contacted Mr. Liu and expressed concerns about his alleged comments. The very moment Mr.Liu stated he did not make those comments, the decision tree for handling the situation should have changed. A meeting could have been arranged; off campus, for the department head, university president, and/or campus security to interview Mr. Liu in an attempt to see if there was any validity in the allegations against him.

    In terms of Mr. Liu having survival gear, there is no reason this should be an indicator of him being a threat. As someone that has multiple security clearances, works in an environment that is very competitive and at times professionally hostile, I can say that I also have a "bug out" pack. I don't always agree with decisions that are made on the job, I voice my opinion on my government's shortcomings, and have even been known to grumble about co-workers. That does not make me a threat, it makes me human.

    PSU's actions appear derelict in evidence gathering and decision making; both being attributes and qualities that are meant to be passed on to those attending the institution. Instead, they have perpetuated stereotypes and supported the rhetoric of those in favor of giving up our rights in favor of "safety and security". Without our rights, we have neither.

    Knee Jerk: 
    This guy should end up owning a wing of the school. A 55 year old woman "accuses" someone of making a threat but that threat can not be corroborated by anyone else. She is so distraught that she sends an e-mail at 3:00 am and when she doesn't receive a response, alerts authorities at the school about a potential threat?

    There are numerous things PSU could have done to maintain the safety of its student body and faculty w/o taking the measure they did. There was both time and opportunity to address the situation more appropriately and with fairness to everyone involved.

    So they booted him over a he said she said comment and because he legally had guns which is his right in this country? Oh, I also forgot that no charges are being filed and his mental evaluation reported no threat to self or others. This is some awesome due process and what not. Student safety is obviously important however and incidents like this should be investigated which it was but peoples rights are also important and is what this country believes in. Are they asking for a lawsuit against them?

    BeaverLover69, professorwho and Tualatin_Joe like this.

    This is a complete and total farce. As a progressive and a gun owner, I disagree with the actions taken by PSU.

    Mr Liu did not do anything illegal.

    Owning guns is not illegal.

    Violent rhetoric is not illegal. (Don't believe me? Listen to an hour of conservative talk radio. I rest my case.)

    Lying to the police is not illegal. Not smart, but not illegal. He was not under oath.

    So, because of this lady's personal fear, Mr Liu's life has been ruined. He cooperated with police, allowed them to search when he didn't have to, submitted himself to their psychological evaluation (which he passed) and did everything else requested of him.

    Owning a gun (or guns) does not automatically make one a threat. It is a constitutionally protected right. Assuming that because one owns firearms that one is a threat to society is a completely fallacious and indefensible assumption.

    Owning camping gear is not illegal. None of the items that Mr Liu had in his possession were illegal.

    As soon as he passed the psych eval, they should have re-instated him. They do not have a legal leg to stand on here. They applied punishment when they was absolutely no actual evidence of any crime being committed.

    If they are going to start punishing everyone who uses any kind of violent rhetoric, I expect the arrests of conservative pundits and politicians to commence forthwith.

    The kid:
    The university overreacted. There is no proof he made the comments that the accuser claims. There is nothing illegal about owning guns, camping gear, survival gear, extra food etc....... In fact common sense people prepare for disasters by having these items on hand.

    professorwho and Aaron like this.

    Well it is truely a sad and pathetic day when just one individual can just say you said something threatening with no supporting evidence, actions, or witnesses and you can be not only foreably detained in a mental ward for a week but expelled from school, fired from your job ( resumably), and have your entire life destroyed......all on the statement of one person. Where are the safeguards ? Wonder if someone is just mad at you, ect. How do you prevent a wrongful accusation ? This is absolutely assinine and once again exposes the fallicy in trying to prevent extreme completely random acts than in the reality of the real world will happen and guess what ?? There is not a damn thing you can do about it. This is a perfect example. This guy should sue the university untill their eyes cross and sue, sue, sue the moronic women who is responsible for this travesty. Outrageous, absolutely outrageous !!!

    NotUrFool, alicynx, rctid_taco and Taxpayer like this.

    There's no bad analysis in giving someone the benefit of the doubt. That's not an analysis. They took the word of one person in a completely isolated incident (PSU has even admitted that they've never had a problem with this student, ever) and ran with it, applying the harshest punishment possible. When four cops show up at your doorstep, that's not giving the benefit of the doubt. If you think it is, you clearly have not been jarred with four cops on your own doorstep for a reason you cannot fathom.

    Ziggy Ratzhield:
    so everybody chill on your first amendment free speech rights, and toss the second amendment right to bear arms, right to fair trial, etc.

    no illegal firearms found.

    the only thing wrong Mr. Liu did was talk to the police. The lesson from this case is to never admit anything to police, never answer any questions without a lawyer, demand a lawyer, demand a search warrant, because the police will not respect any of your rights.

    NotUrFool, alicynx and Taxpayer like this.

    Rarely do I agree with you but you hit the nail on the head.

    What you guys don't understand is the fact that PSU campus security is WAY, WAAAAAAY over the top with freaking out at the least little thing. They will pull a man in for questioning if a woman says she was uncomfortable with him walking behind her.

    The fact that the person who recounted the "statements" was taken completely at face value undermines the innocence of the guy who has been seriously wronged by the university. They didn't go talk to him to get his side of this mess - they went over to his apartment to detain him. Period. He was found guilty before he opened his mouth to them, and no matter how they slice it, this is the reality of the situation.

    If this truly was "not a rush to judgment", how much time did they give it? If the lady sent an email at 3am, and the cops arrived at 9am, when did they hear the statement? How long did they ruminate on his possible innocence before calling out the cavalry to his doorstep?

    NotUrFool likes this.

    The university (one I once attended) deserves to be sued and enjoined from further similar behavior. Total lack of due process rights.

    NotUrFool likes this.

    Two points strike me about the Oregonian's description of this case:

    (1) Part of the police response to Liu appears to have been driven by circumstances the police considered suspicious......camping equipment, survival gear, etc. This suggests our freedoms are constrained to those a police officer would feel to be "normal" or "acceptable". Would I be considered suspect because I have books in several foreign languages, something not the norm? Or because I do not have a single firearm?

    (2) If the Student Conduct Committee meeting was not judicial in nature what was the basis for expelling Liu? The Oregonian makes it sound as if the expulsion was a consequence of the meeting, and that certainly seems judicial. If Liu was not allowed on campus to attend the committee meeting there are a number of public buildings within a few blocks where the hearing could have taken place with his direct participation.

    This in no way diminishes the seriousness of the case and underscores the danger of easy access to firearms. But there seems to be a rush to judgment in which Liu bears the burden without a judicial process. In the absence of judicial determination of responsibility it would seem PSU has an obligation to deliver compensation. The university confronts a no-win dilemma but cannot resolve it by passing the burden to a student, faculty member, or convenient member of the community.

  • Letters: Health care, political rhetoric, tomato fight, PSU public safety, Boy Scouts, marijuana
    Published: Friday, July 27, 2012, 8:00 PM
    Letters to the editor By Letters to the editor(link)

    Letter to the editor:

    Henry Liu's story was more chilling to me than riots in Syria or even mass killings in the U.S. Why? Because it showed how we have become so fearful in America that a student cannot say something negative about a teacher in a private conversation without having the full force of the law come down on him, a response that contravenes one of our most precious freedoms -- that of free speech.

    When it became clear that Henry Liu was not guilty of anything, the university should have immediately apologized and reinstated him.

    It was the right thing to do and would have saved PSU a lot of money, not to mention credibility.

    Southeast Portland

  • Henry Liu: Arrested, Locked in a Mental Ward, Discredited - On the Word of One Accuser
    Lisa Loving Of The Skanner News August 02, 2012(link)

    Eric Bagai, CEO at Foreworks & Flaming Sparrow Press
    The accuser should be liable for damages, court costs, and time served. Someone should know who that person is, and if not then PSU and the police are equally liable for the same damages.

    Jacki Coburn, Research Assistant and De Facto Lab Manager at Oregon State University
    Agreed. Losing financial aid could ruin the poor guy's future too, so someone should have to pay for his education as well.

The HENRY LIU DEFENSE FUND is an independently administered trust account. All monies will be used for Henry Liu's ongoing living expenses, legal costs, and fees associated with his defense.