‘Viva Los 1070’ Shirt Rankles Suns Security

Mike Sunnucks, Phoenix Business Journal, May 7, 2010

A Phoenix business executive wore a pro-immigration law T-shirt to Game 2 of Los Suns against the Spurs on Wednesday night. The executive was hassled over the shirt by Suns security but was later allowed to return to his seats behind the San Antonio bench, and he was allowed to still wear the shirt.

Jim Clark, CEO of Republic Monetary Exchange in Phoenix, got two seats to Game 2 and decided to don an orange shirt that read ‘Viva los 1070′ for the game. Clark said a friend who has a professional security background also wore the shirt. It was in response to the Suns’ opposition to Arizona’s immigration law (Senate Bill 1070).

The Suns wore “Los Suns” jerseys for Game 2 in protest of the immigration bill. Clark supports the immigration bill and does not like the Suns’ public stance against the measure

Clark said he and his friend were approached by security guards early in the game at US Airways Center and asked to take the shirts off or turn them inside out.

“I said, ‘No, I’m not going to do that,'” said Clark. Republic, based in Phoenix, deals in precious metals and offers investments in gold and silver.

Clark said the security guards then removed him and his friends from their seats, but they were later allowed to return after discussing the matter with the Suns’ security director.

They were allowed to keep their pro-1070 shirts on right-side out. Clark said he later received a call from Suns president Rick Welts, who apologized for the incident and is giving Clark four seats to the next 10 Suns games. Clark said Welts still defended the Suns’ stance against the immigration bill.

The Suns did not comment on the episode. Clark said he plans on wearing the pro-1070 again, and he might print up some more shirts to sell.

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