“Hand Up” by Kinsee Morlan
Recently, about two dozen doctors and surgeons in Tijuana have been kidnapped and held for ransom by lowlife thugs looking to make a quick and easy buck.
It was working until the kidnappers went too far by nabbing a top surgeon at one of Tijuana’s leading hospitals. The public outcry and doctor strikes that followed convinced the kidnappers to let the surgeon go unharmed and without a payment.
But the doctors aren’t done. This Saturday, Tijuana doctors are planning on wandering through the mass of cars crossing at San Ysidro and conducting surveys on the security situation in Tijuana.
“How safe do you feel? What could be done to improve the situation?” — these are the types of things they plan to ask. Then they’ll turn in the results to the local police.
How effective will the survey be? Not very. But it’s highly symbolic and represents the way most people in Tijuana feel about the kidnapping and the ineffectiveness of Tijuana police.
Most people with money in this city (thank Jebus I’m not one of them) have been forced to flee to East Lake (aka “Chulajuana”), a rich suburb of Chula Vista. If you click on that last link, by the way, scroll down to “From the Center to the Suburbs,” a short little piece I wrote about a guy whose family left Tijuana after his brother was kidnapped. But even with the D’Volada (Mexico’s equivalent to Starbucks) that’s sprung up in East Lake’s center, I’m sure most of those rich Tijuanenses would love to be able to come home. Life on el otro lado, my friends, just ain’t the same. If only Tijuana could shake this damn safety problem, it’d truly be the happiest place on earth.