Mexico, March 15
President Donald Trump’s motorcade Tuesday zipped past demonstrators who both jeered and cheered him and his plans for a “big beautiful border wall” after he inspected prototypes.
The president’s first visit to the California border amid a contentious battle with state officials over his immigration policies was peaceful. Hundreds of people participated in scattered rallies on both sides of the border dividing San Diego from Tijuana, Mexico.Law enforcement was out in force, and the area where Trump visited the eight prototypes was heavily cordoned off.
Rows of police kept apart supporters and opponents of the Trump administration along the avenue where his motorcade drove down. Each side booed, cheered and waved both Mexican and American flags as the president’s convoy sped past them. Among the crowd, a man wearing a “Make America Great Again” cap debated policies with a woman holding a “No human is illegal” sign.About 10 miles (16 kilometers) west of the prototypes, protesters chanted, “No ban! No wall!” at the nation’s busiest border crossing, San Ysidro. Tens of thousands of people enter the US daily from Tijuana, Mexico, many on their way to work or school in San Diego. Drivers honked as a show of support.
Jose Gonzalez, 21, stopped to snap a photo of the protesters holding signs, including one that read: “Wall off Putin!”
“I don’t think it’s really fair how he has the choice to separate us,” said Gonzalez, a dual citizen who lives in Tijuana and crosses daily to work at a San Diego ramen restaurant.
Army veteran Mark Prieto, 48, shook his head as he walked by the protest.“People are so narrow-minded,” said the firefighter, who voted for Trump. “Finally we have someone who is putting America first.” Trump examined eight 30-foot-tall (9-meter-tall) prototypes built last year along the border in a bid to fulfill his signature campaign promise.
US authorities moved semi-trailers between the prototypes and the Mexican border, offering a layer of protection. A man, woman and two children were seen climbing the border fence at the site Monday and were immediately detained. The president spoke with immigration enforcement officials.
Mexico, March 15