June 30, 2012
A 22-foot-tall concrete and steel mesh fence towers over two girls swinging on monkey bars, their new playground forged by a 650-mile barrier and America’s growing resolve to stare down undocumented immigrants, human smugglers and drug traffickers.
They play on the edge of a historic El Paso neighborhood known as Chihuahuita, where their generation is the first to know a truly fortified borderline. The $2.4 billion dollar barrier is equipped with spotlights, motion detectors and surveillance cameras, and watched by the largest Border Patrol in history.
It sends a message as tough as the steel mesh: the U.S. wants immigrants to get in line and use the front door.