San Diego, California Hatred, Fear and Vigilance

A flood of illegal Mexican immigrants fuels a wave of nativism and a tense face-off on the Tijuana border

Just as the sun slips toward the Pacific, they gather along Latin America's northernmost fringe. Several hundred white, mainly lower-middle-class Southern Californians arrive in dusty pickups and weathered sedans to confront what they say is a criminal invasion of America. They park single file along a marshy field on the San Diego-Tijuana border. Soon the men and women are engaged in chitchat typical of a social event. Their crimson bumper stickers proclaim WE WANT ORDER ON OUR BORDER, a demand that nearby U.S. Border Patrol agents work hard to enforce. Some of the 800 officers, who nightly nab upwards of 1,500...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!