Thursday, February 28, 2013

Via JMG: New California Marriage Poll


 
Click over to Zack Ford at Think Progress for the rest of the results.


Reposted from Joe

Via JMG: Obama To File Prop 8 Brief




Reposted from Joe

Via Buddhism on Beliefnet:


Daily Buddhist Wisdom






What monks, is the world? The eye and shapes, the ear and sounds, the nose and smells, the tongue and tastes, the body and tactile objects, the mind and mental objects--these form the world as we know it. When an eye and a shape are there, then the consciousness of seeing arises. From this consciousness comes sensation; that which is sensed is thought over; that which is thought over is projected outward as the external world. So I declare that in this six-foot-long body with its perceptions and thinking lies the world, the beginning of the world, the ending of the world, and the way to the ending of the world.
- Majjhima Nikaya

Via Tricycle Daily Dharma:

Tricycle Daily Dharma February 28, 2013

Our Shelter Within

When we can be secure in our inner source for true happiness, we don’t expose ourselves to the devastation that comes when outside hopes for happiness and security are dashed. We have our shelter, our place of security, inside. And we needn’t be afraid that this is an escapist shelter. When the basis of our well-being is firm within, we can act with true courage and compassion for others, for we’re coming from a solid position of calmness and strength.
- Thanissaro Bhikkhu, “What We’ve Been Practicing For”
Read the entire article in the Wisdom Collection through February 29th, 2013
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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Via JMG: 300 Corporations & Cities File DOMA Brief


 
A coalition of almost 300 corporations, cities, and other organizations, some of whom also appear on yesterday's Prop 8 brief, have filed a Supreme Court brief in support of the overturn of DOMA.  The ACLU reports via press release:
Signers include Amazon.com, Apple, Bank of New York, CBS, Cisco Systems, Citigroup, Deutsche Bank, Facebook, Google, JetBlue, Johnson & Johnson, Levi Strauss & Co, Liberty Mutual, Marriott International, Microsoft, Morgan Stanley, NIKE, Pfizer, Starbucks, Twitter, Viacom, Walt Disney Company and Xerox and the cities of Baltimore, Boston, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, Santa Monica and Seattle, among others.
Other supporters, including religious leaders, retired military personnel, children’s rights groups and former cabinet secretaries are expected to file their briefs later this week. Some groups will be holding a press conference at the Hyatt Regency in Washington, DC on Thursday at 9:30 a.m. announcing their support for Windsor’s case, as well as the Supreme Court case seeking to repeal California’s ban on marriage for same-sex couples.
Scanning the full brief, I also see Adobe, Alaska Airlines, Diageo, Intuit, M&M Mars, Pfizer, and REI.  Sorry, haters. It's time to also boycott Flash, booze, spreadsheets, candy, boner pills, and camping tents! Enjoy your sober, flaccid, YouTube-free caves! And no Little Mermaid or Lion King for the kiddies, not that you'll be able to buy an anti-gay TV or cable provider.


Reposted from Joe

Via Buddhism on Beliefnet:


Daily Buddhist Wisdom






If you seek after truth, you should investigate things in such a way that your consciousness as you investigate is not distracted by what you find, or diffused and scattered; neither is it fixed and set. For the one who is not swayed, there will be a transcending of birth, death, and time. Whether you walk or stand or lie down, Stretch your limbs or draw them in again, Let you do all these things attentively, Above, across, and back again. Whatever your place in the world, Let you be the one who views the movement Of all compounded things with attention.
- Itivuttaka Sutta

Via Tricycle Daily Dharma:

Tricycle Daily Dharma February 27, 2013

Touching Liberation

Insight can’t be found in sutras, commentaries, verbal expression, or —isms. Liberation and awakened understanding can’t be found by devoting ourselves to the study of the Buddhist scriptures. This is like trying to find fresh water in dry bones. Returning to the present moment, using our clear mind which exists right here and now, we can be in touch with liberation and enlightenment, as well as with the Buddha and the patriarchs as living realities right in this moment.
- Thich Nhat Hanh, “Simply Stop”
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Via Being Liberal / FB:


Via JMG: Dozens Of Major Corporations To File Supreme Court Brief Against Prop 8


Later this week dozens of major corporations will file a joint Supreme Court brief in support of the overturn of Prop 8.  The names are huge, people. Fortune Magazine reports:
On Thursday, dozens of American corporations, including Apple, Alcoa, Facebook, eBay, Intel, and Morgan Stanley will submit an amicus brief in the landmark Hollingsworth v. Perry case broadly arguing to the U.S. Supreme Court that laws banning same-sex marriages, like California's ballot initiative Proposition 8, are unconstitutional under the Due Process and Equal Protection Clauses.
According to a draft copy obtained by Fortune, the companies argue that such laws "send an unmistakeable signal that same-sex couples are in some way inferior to opposite-sex couples, a proposition that is anathema to amici's commitment to equality and fair treatment to all."
At least 60 companies had committed to signing the brief as of Tuesday evening, according to Joshua Rosenkranz, who is counsel of record on the brief and head of the Supreme Court and appellate litigation practice at Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe. That number is expected to rise by Thursday, however, according to Rosenkranz. Others who have already committed to sign include AIG, Becton Dickinson, Cisco, Cummins, Kimpton, Levi Strauss, McGraw Hill, NCR, Nike, Office Depot, Oracle, Panasonic, Qualcomm, and Xerox.
An excerpt from the brief declares that Proposition 8 "leaves companies in the untenable position of being compelled implicitly to endorse the second-class status to which their gay and lesbian employees, clients, customers, and business associates are relegated. Until the law no longer relegates same-sex couples to second-class status as inferior 'domestic partnerships,' our adherence to the law compels us to abide by a distinction that stigmatizes and dehumanizes gay men and lesbians."
posted by Joe

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

JMG HomoQuotable: Peter Tatchell


"Cardinal [Keith] O'Brien condemned homosexuality as a grave sin and was a long-time opponent of gay equality. He supported homophobic discrimination in law, including the current ban on same-sex marriage. In the light of these allegations, his stance looks hypocritical. He appears to have preached one thing in public while doing something different in private. Several other prominent opponents of equal marriage are guilty of double standards and vulnerable to similar exposure. They include anti-gay clergy and politicians.

"It is estimated that around 40% of Catholic priests in Britain are gay, which makes the church's opposition to gay equality so two-faced and absurd. A significant proportion of all Cardinals worldwide is thought to be gay. Recent revelations in Italy have alleged the existence of a gay mafia within the Vatican, including senior Cardinals and other Vatican officials, and their participation in gay bars, clubs, saunas, chat rooms and male prostitution services. The Vatican is shamelessly championing homophobia and the denial of legal equality to gay people, while hosting a hotbed of secret, guilt-ridden clerical homosexuality." - British activist Peter Tatchell, in a statement posted on his website.


Reposted from Joe

Via JMG: Pat Robertson Expands His Anti-Gay Rights Campaign To Brazil


Pat Robertson's "legal" group, the American Center for Law & Justice, has long extended its scaly tentacles into other nations such as Russia and Kenya, where they work to inflame anti-gay sentiments.  Now the ACLJ has set up an office in Brazil.  Buzzfeed reports:
The head of the new Brazil office, Filipe Coelho, is a scion of one of Brazil's leading evangelical families, and aims to stop hate crime legislation from becoming law, opposes marriage rights for same-sex couples and speaks strongly about the dangers of employment protections for LGBT people. Same-sex marriage is also legal in some Brazilian jurisdictions. This includes São Paulo state, which has a population of more than 40 million people, roughly the same size as Argentina. But Brazil also has an evangelical movement that most closely parallels the United States. It accounts for about 20 percent of the population and it has serious muscle in election campaigns and the country's legislature.
The ACLJ is headed by Jay Sekulow, who first came to fame for convincing the Supreme Court that Jews For Jesus had the right to harass people at airports.  And his ACLJ gig has earned him tens of millions.
Since 1998, the two charities have paid out more than $33 million to members of Sekulow's family and businesses they own or co-own, according to the charities' federal tax returns. One of the charities is controlled by the Sekulow family — tax documents show that all four of CASE's board members are Sekulows and another is an officer — an arrangement criticized by a nonprofit watchdog group.
Tax-exempt hate, now in Brazil. Praise Jesus.
posted by Joe

Via JMG: Edith Windsor Files DOMA Brief


 
Edith Windsor today filed a Supreme Court brief in the DOMA case that bears her name. Chris Geidner has the details:
Specifically, Windsor argues laws like DOMA that classify people based on their sexual orientation should be subjected to "heightened scrutiny" by courts, which demands the government to provide an "important" reason for the law in question. A similar argument was made by the Obama administration in a filing last Friday. In discussing the standards that courts use when determining whether heightened scrutiny should apply, Windsor argues that gays and lesbians have faced a history of discrimination, and that their being gay does not affect their ability to contribute to society. Additionally, she argues that sexual orientation is not, generally speaking, fluid, and that the group "lacks political power" because of prejudice.
Read the full brief here.


Reposted from Joe

Via Buddhism on Beliefnet:


Daily Buddhist Wisdom






Who would have thought that all things are the manifestation of the Essence of Mind!
- The Sutra of Hui Neng

Via Tricycle Daily Dharma:

Tricycle Daily Dharma February 26, 2013

Unmasking the Self

Sitting quietly, doing nothing, not knowing what is next and not concerned with what was or what may be next, a new mind is operating that is not connected with the conditioned past and yet perceives and understands the whole mechanism of conditioning. It is the unmasking of the self that is nothing but masks—images, memories of past experiences, fears, hopes, and the ceaseless demand to be something or become somebody.
- Toni Packer, "Unmasking the Self"
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Monday, February 25, 2013

Via Buddhism on Beliefnet:



Daily Buddhist Wisdom






The pleasure and joy that arise in dependence on the eye: this is the gratification in the eye. That the eye is impermanent, suffering, and subject to change: this is the danger in the eye. The removal and abandonment of desire and lust from the eye: this is the escape from the eye.
- Buddha, "The Connected Discourses of the Buddha"

Sunday, February 24, 2013

JMG Afternoon View: Gay Historical Marker:



The above sign was posted in 2005 by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission. Visit Philly, the city's official tourism organization, has some details:
Pennsylvania erected Philadelphia’s first LGBT marker to coincide with the 40th anniversary of the first Annual Reminder, a demonstration led by pioneering gay activists on July 4 from 1965 to 1969. Standing directly across the street from Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell Center at 6th and Chestnut Streets, the marker serves as a reminder of the city’s open and progressive history. Also adding to Philadelphia’s LGBT appeal are nearly 70 rainbow street signs that adorn the lively and popular Gayborhood. The street signs, along with the blue-and-yellow markers provide great backdrops for LGBT travelers in search of interesting photo opportunities.
A second LGBT-related marker was installed in late 2011 to honor Giovanni's Room, which some consider to have been the first (and is certainly the oldest still-running) gay bookstore in the nation.  We saw both today in a very entertaining Visit Philly trolley tour of Philadelphia's most historic sites and its most-popular gayborhood.
RELATED: Read more about the Annual Reminder.


Reposted from Joe

Via Tricycle Daily Dharma:

Tricycle Daily Dharma February 24, 2013

Our Innate Wisdom


All of the 'words of wisdom' are in your own heart, so why waste time listening to someone else speak them? The Buddhadharma is the same. The principles in the sutras come from our own hearts. The wisdom and happiness of all buddhas comes from our own minds. 

- Heng Ch'au, "Bowing"
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Saturday, February 23, 2013

JMG Tweet Of The Day: Better Midler



Reposted from Joe

Suze Orman Discusses DOMA's Economic Harms

By On Top Magazine Staff
Published: February 22, 2013
Financial whiz Suze Orman appeared on CNN to discuss the economic harms the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) causes.

DOMA is the 1996 law which prevents federal agencies from recognizing the legal marriages of gay and lesbian couples.

Tricycle Daily Dharma February 23, 2013

Meeting Life with Grace

When we face the limitations of our power and control, all we can skillfully do is bow to that moment. The conceit of self is challenged and eroded not only by the circumstances of our lives but also by our willingness to meet those circumstances with grace rather than with fear. 
- Christina Feldman, "Long Journey to a Bow"
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Friday, February 22, 2013

Obama Reiterates Gay Marriage Support In Discussing Prop 8 Case


BEN IVORY - THE RIGHTEOUS ONES (Official Music Video)

Thanks to JMG for this

You can close your eyes if you want to
Lock your doors and hide if we haunt you
Get your guns tonight if we scare you
But we ain’t goin’ nowhere, no we ain’t goin’ nowhere

You can pass a law if you need to
Punch us in the jaw when we beat you
Use your shock and awe if you dare to
But we ain’t goin’ nowhere, no we ain’t goin’ nowhere







Via JMG: AP Issues Style Guide On Husband/Wife


Joe says:

For the last week the LGBT blogosphere has been battling the Associated Press over a direction to  their reporters that they should not automatically refer to people in legal same-sex marriages as "husband" or "wife."  I left the story alone because I figured the AP would immediately correct such as obviously wrong position. Today they finally did. Here's the new policy.
husband, wife Regardless of sexual orientation, husband or wife is acceptable in all references to individuals in any legally recognized marriage. Spouse or partner may be used if requested.
The AP adds: "The AP has never had a Stylebook entry on the question of the usage of husband and wife. All the previous conversation was in the absence of such a formal entry. This lays down clear and simple usage. After reviewing existing practice, we are formalizing 'husband, wife' as an entry."


Reposted from Joe

Via JMG: Gallup's LGBT Survey: Colorized


 
Somebody over at Buzzfeed colorized Gallup's survey.

Labels: , ,

Reposted from Joe

Via JMG: Nate Silver Handicaps The Oscars


Details.


Reposted from Joe

Via Tricycle Daily Dharma:

Tricycle Daily Dharma February 22, 2013

Only the Present Moment

Every moment in life is absolute in itself. That's all there is. There is nothing other than this present moment; there is no past, there is no future; there is nothing but this. So when we don't pay attention to each little this, we miss the whole thing. 
- Charlotte Joko Beck, "Attention Means Attention"
Read the entire article in the Wisdom Collection through February 23rd, 2013
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Via Buddhism on Beliefnet:



Daily Buddhist Wisdom






When other beings, especially those who hold a grudge against you, abuse and harm you out of envy, you should not abandon them, but hold them as objects of your greatest compassion and take care of them.
- His Holiness the Dalai Lama

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Via Buddhism on Beliefnet:


Daily Buddhist Wisdom






Not by harming life Does one become noble. One is termed noble For being gentle To all living things.
- Dhammapada, 19, translated by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.

Via Tricycle Daily Dharma:

Tricycle Daily Dharma February 21, 2013

Cultivating Relaxed Awareness

When the thinking mind takes a break for even a few seconds, a kind of relaxed awareness replaces the usual stream of thoughts. We need to encourage this and not fill this space with anything else; just let it be. 
- Tsultrim Allione, "Feeding Your Demons"
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Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Via JMG: Mexico Vs SCOTUS



Visit their Facebook page. (Via JMG reader Scott)


Reposted from Joe

What do you want to do when you grow up?





 Me, Guatemala, During my masters research project in Patzun, Chimaltengo, Guatemala 1982

When I first traveled to Latin America, or more specifically, Guatemala, in the early 80’s and when I worked with kids in schools there, or met in communities I visited, I naively asked them what they wanted to do when they grew up. The answer was always, a shrug and a “no se” (I don’t know). 
It wasn’t a middle class, bored USAan[i] teenager “I don’t know”, it was a literal a not-dreams-were-possible-because-there-was-little-to any-future-I-don’t-know. Sometimes it was a “I don’t know” that said they were content to carry on doing the same thing that their parents and grandparents had been doing for hundreds of years I don’t know.
The “I don’t know” of contentment, which for me is admirable.  I come from a particular social class and culture of discontentment, and needing and wanting more, and better and faster and bigger is a genetic flaw that, as a Buddhist, I have to constantly work to tamp down, to ignore, to send this discontentment away.
So when my husband finished graduate school, and we decided to move to Brasil, mostly because as you either may or may not know, the USA does not afford GLBT people equal marriage rights and the ability to sponsor of their spouses, as striaght people do. We applied for and were awarded positions as faculty members in small university high in the mountains of Minas Gerais. I retired from California State University, Sacramento and we are both professors in the Centro de Educação Aberta e a Distância (the Center of Open and Distance Education) at the Universidade Federal de Ouro Preto part of UAB (the Open University of Brasil) which provides higher education opportunities to thousands of Brazilians that traditionally would never have had access.
I have been teaching K-Univeristy students since 1978. My first teaching job was in a rural school in Oregon. I went to Oregon State, taught school in Oregon, then Guatemala, after which I went to graduate school in New Mexico, returned to Guatemala for masters work, and did research in Puebla Mexico with computers and kids as part of my doctoral research.If I recall, the school there was a test site Apple de México, and they were debugging the very first keyboard that allowed accents and things necessary in Spanish and Portuguese. Before that time you printed out the document, and then drew in the accents and the all important ~ over the letter n. My research replicated what we were doing in Guatemala and New Mexico with LOGO and kids in their math lab.
My first trip to Brasil was in 1992, and once again I asked kids, “What do you want to do when you grow up?” And again the answer was, more often than not, “Não se". And for much for the same reason I found in Guatemala a few years earlier. Yet I began to notice a subtle difference,  more and more, the answer began to change, “Eu quero ser um…” I want to be a… I began to see dreams. Brasil, like much of South America was awakening, the Green Giant was waking from its slumber, it was moving forward.

In 2005-2006, when my husband Milton and I realized his visa prospects were wearing thin, and it became to expensive for us to stay in the United States (over 12 years his visa had cost us over $30,000.00) I took up an offer as visiting professor on Ouro Preto, thinking it was time for us to begin moving south. Half way through my stay in Ouro Preto, the San Juan Unified School District in a suburb of Sacramento, offered to sponsor him for his green card. Obviously, this changed everything, and his dream, of earning a doctorate, was suddenly possible. This allowed him to pursue a doctorate degree, and he graduated as CSU’s first doctoral student! So back I went, all the time our dream was to return to Brasil, so I continued working at CSUS and visiting, working as a visiting professor, publishing, and lecturing until the time came for us to pull of stakes.
Our program sends course work to over 5000 students in 30 polos in three states in Brasil. A few months ago, I represented the university at a graduation of our students in one of our polos in the state of Bahia. As is my custom, I asked a 9 year old daughter of one of our students, “o que você quer ser quando crescer?”
She looked up at me, pointing her finger at me and with great confidence said to me, “Vou ser um médico!” (I am going to be an doctor!). It was more than a dream, it was an expectation, a right, an assertion and knowledge that she could, no she would do it, because she had seen her Mother study, and now graduate, and so would she.
Like I said earlier, I have been teaching since 1978, and rarely if ever have I been privileged to actually witness the physical difference in what I do makes in the lives of my students and the communities they came from, at another graduation, in a region of Brasil that made a discovery of natural gas and oil, the mayor and the school superintendent told me that if it hadn’t been for UFOP, this tiny town of 7000 people would have lost any hope of taking part of the wealth. Hundreds of people were expected to move in from outside, and traditionally when this occurred the locals were relegated to menial jobs, but because of the student earning business administration, pedagogy and math degrees via CEAD-UFOP, they had been given their own tools to build their own stores, open their own restaurants, build their own apartments to rent, even a new hotel. They were creating and achieving opportunities… dreams. It was then, at the ripe old age of 57, that I realized that I was finally doing what I wanted to do when I grew up.
So, I ask you, “What do you want to do when you grow up?”

Me, teaching online CEAD-UFOP, 2012



[i] I use the term USAan, or more accurately “estadunidense” for my nationality, as America is a continent, we who live in both North & South America ARE all Americans…

Via Buddhism on Beliefnet:


Daily Buddhist Wisdom






Living in forests far away from other people is not true seclusion. True seclusion is to be free from the power of likes and dislikes. It is also to be free from the mental attitude that one must be special because one is treading the path. Those who remove themselves to far forests often feel superior to others. They think that because they are solitary they are being guided in a special way and that those who live an ordinary life can never have that experience. But that is conceit and is not help to others. The true recluse is one who is available to others, helping them with affectionate speech and personal example.
- Prajnaparamita

Via Tricycle Daily Dharma:

Tricycle Daily Dharma February 20, 2013

Helping All Beings

If hungry people come, give them food. If thirsty people come, give water. If suffering people come, help them. That is our job—life after life, just continue to help all beings. But to do that, you have to have mind which is clear like space. 
- Seung Sahn, "BOOM!"
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Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Via Tricycle Daily Dharma:

Tricycle Daily Dharma February 19, 2013

Learning to Let Go

Letting go of fixation is effectively a process of learning to be free, because every time we let go of something, we become free of it. Whatever we fixate upon limits us because fixation makes us dependent upon something other than ourselves. Each time we let go of something, we experience another level of freedom. 
- Traleg Kyabgon Rinpoche, "Letting Go of Spiritual Experience"
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JMG Headline Of The Day


Details. (Also: Seriously, Daily Mail? "Deaf and dumb"?)


Reposted from Joe

Via JMG: Americans Agree: DOMA Discriminates


Source. Hit the link for a bigger version.


Reposted from Joe

Via Buddhism on Beliefnet:

Daily Buddhist Wisdom






Do not choose bad friends. Do not choose persons of low habits. Select good friends. Be discriminating. Choose the best.
- Dhammapada 78

Monday, February 18, 2013

Gay Man Decides to Yell Back at Anti-Gay Subway Preacher, Train Applauds





Standard operating procedure for dealing with subway "preachers," whether bigoted or merely insane, is to pretend they don't exist. Don't argue; don't take their literature. It'll be over soon. Just ignore them until they move on to the next car and you can hear your podcast again.
That's not the approach one gay man took two days ago in response to a preacher's homophobic rant, which included gems like "Michael Jackson died because he was gay." Instead, he met the preacher shout-for-shout.

"I'm a man," the gay guy, identifiable in the video by his large fuzzy hat, replies at one point (1:33). "And I'm a good man. And I'm a gay man and Jesus loves me. Jesus loves me!" The train broke out into spontaneous applause.

http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2013/02/gay-subway-preacher-video.html

Via Buddhism on Beliefnet:


Daily Buddhist Wisdom






You really have to know your own fundamental mind before you can stop and rest. If you know your mind and arrive at the fundamental, that is like space merging with space.
- Ta-tu

Via Tricycle Daily Dharma:

Tricycle Daily Dharma February 18, 2013

The Purpose of Mindfulness

Mindfulness allows us to watch our thoughts, see how one thought leads to the next, decide if we’re heading toward an unhealthy path, and if so, let go and change directions. 
- Sharon Salzberg, "Mindfulness and Difficult Emotions"
Read the entire article in the Wisdom Collection through February 19th, 2013
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Sunday, February 17, 2013

Via Tricycle Daily Dharma:

Tricycle Daily Dharma February 17, 2013

A Foundation of Presence

Through mindfulness, we develop greater composure and a heightened sensitivity to nonverbal communication. Then, to the extent that we ourselves are present, we can radiate that same quality outward to the people around us. It is hard to be generous, disciplined, or patient if we are not fully present. If we are present and attentive, and our mind is flexible, we are more receptive to the environment around us.
- Judy Lief, “On the Contagious Power of Presence”
Read the entire article in the Wisdom Collection through February 18th, 2013
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Saturday, February 16, 2013

Via JMG: Soccer Stars Rally For Robbie Rogers


Professional soccer players have poured onto Twitter to express support for Robbie Rogers, who yesterday came out and announced his retirement from the sport. The New York Times has posted a lengthy recapping of the messages to Rogers, whose number of Twitter followers swelled by the tens of thousands following his announcement.

RELATED: Some of the messages to Rogers express hope that he returns to professional soccer.  Rogers' contract is currently owned by the Chicago Fire and yesterday their head coach issued this statement: "Yesterday I thought he was a very good player and I still think that today. Should Robbie want to return to the game, we would still be open to him being part of the Fire."


Reposted from Joe