Across the border from San Diego, Tijuana has become one of the deadliest cites in the world
It seemed like everyone in Christian Castillo’s life was getting killed or running from death.The scourge of drug addiction within Mexico has led to the devaluation of life on a grand scale. The cartels are not just exporting their product anymore, they are consuming it and selling it to locals. to a devasting effect. For Democrats to pretend there is no crisis on the border is to ignore the degradation of life that is also being exported into this country by the drug culture. Tijuana has also become a gateway into California by migrants attracted by its sanctuary state status.
Two neighbors on his block were gunned down, along with the taco vendor at the end of the street. Then came a childhood friend of Castillo’s mother who had started selling drugs and was shot dead with her husband. Soon their son was executed, too.
Castillo, who until a few years ago held a good job at a Tijuana insurance company, didn’t attend any of the funerals. He was too busy getting high and trying not to be killed next.
“It felt like death was following me,” he said.
Tijuana, a city of 1.8 million that not long ago was celebrating a major reduction in violence, is in the grip of an unprecedented homicide crisis.
A record 2,518 people were killed here in 2018 — nearly seven times the total in 2012. With 140 killings per 100,000 people, Tijuana is now one of the deadliest cities in the world.
Across the border in San Diego, there were 34 homicides last year, or just over 2 killings per 100,000 people.
The root cause of the bloodshed is fundamentally different from previous iterations of violence in Tijuana.
In the past, the body count was driven by powerful drug cartels battling over lucrative trafficking routes to the United States. Now the main cause is competition in a growing local drug trade, with low-level dealers sometimes dying over the right to sell drugs on a single street corner.
Local and state officials estimate that up to 90% of the city’s homicides are linked to local drug sales, and authorities say they are seeing a similar pattern in Juarez, Cancun and other Mexican cities at the forefront of a nationwide rise in killings, which have nearly doubled over the last three years.