Amicus Brief from International Experts (U.S. Supreme Court)
Six international experts signed an amicus brief asking the United States Supreme Court to review the Texas Court of Appeals decision in The Local Church et al v. Harvest House et al case. The brief argued that “the Court of Appeals’ reduction of the term cult to an “ecclesiastical” definition, and its failure to address the secular understanding of cult as presented in the Encyclopedia of Cults and New Religions, increases the threat of persecution to Christians residing in religiously restrictive countries…” The amici who signed the brief were:
- Ambassador Winston Lord—U.S. Ambassador to the People’s Republic of China, 1985-1989; President of Council on Foreign Relations, 1977-1985; Special Assistant to National Security Advisor Henry Kissinger; Assistant Secretary of State, East Asian Policy, 1993-1997;
- Ambassador Nicholas Platt—U.S. Ambassador to the Philippines (1987-1991) and Pakistan (1991-1992); Foreign Service assignments in Hong Kong, Beijing and Tokyo; China Analyst at the State Department; Member of National Security Council, Asian Affairs; Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense, Asian Affairs; Assistant Secretary of State for United Nations Affairs; Executive Secretary, Department of State; President of the Asia Society for twelve years;
- Ambassador Burton Levin—U.S. Ambassador to Myanmar, 1987-1990; U.S. Consul General in Hong Kong, 1981-1986 and former top China expert at the State Department; Visiting Professor of Asian Politics at Carleton College;
- Dr. Ed Irons—Director of the Hong Kong Institute for Culture, Commerce and Religion; former Professor at the Beijing University of Science and Technology;
- Bette Bao Lord—Author and Human Rights Activist;
- Sidney Rittenberg—A leading American expert on China lived in China for 35 years, 16 as a political prisoner; Founder and President of Rittenberg Associates, Inc.