The Phoenix Suns will wear “Los Suns” on their jerseys in Game 2 of the Western Conference semifinals tonight, owner Robert Sarver said, “to honor our Latino community and the diversity of our league, the state of Arizona, and our nation.”
The decision to wear the jerseys on the Cinco de Mayo holiday stems from a law passed by the Arizona Legislature and signed by Gov. Jan Brewer that has drawn widespread criticism from Latino organizations and civil rights groups that say it could lead to racial profiling of Hispanics. President Barack Obama has called the law “misguided.”
The measure makes it a crime under state law to be in the country illegally, and it directs local police to question people about their immigration status and demand to see their documents if there is reason to suspect they are illegal.
Sarver came up with the “Los Suns” jersey idea but left it up to the players for the final decision, Suns guard Steve Nash said, and all of them were for it.
“I think it’s fantastic,” Nash said after Tuesday’s practice. “I think the law is very misguided. I think it’s, unfortunately, to the detriment of our society and our civil liberties. I think it’s very important for us to stand up for things we believe in. As a team and as an organization, we have a lot of love and support for all of our fans. The league is very multicultural. We have players from all over the world, and our Latino community here is very strong and important to us.”