We Shall Overwhelm* — FY 2003-12

By William Buchanan
Volume 23, Number 2 (Winter 2013)
Issue theme: "Moving forward"

Are we being overwhelmed? We are. But government statistics obscure that fact. Who’s getting the jobs?

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) publishes a huge array of labor statistics on its web page: bls.gov. BLS tallies all workers, real and potential, whether native-born, legal immigrant, illegal alien, or guest worker. It divides this real and potential civilian labor force (76 percent of U.S. residents) into employed, unemployed, and not-in-labor-force (homemakers, discouraged workers, disabled workers, able retired workers, students, etc). It further divides the three categories among four ethno-racial groups: white, black, Asian, and Hispanic. Unfortunately, the agency distorts reality by counting Hispanics twice — once as Hispanics and again by including them in the figures for white, black, and Asian.

Let’s look at the effect these mixed figures produce. Published BLS figures over the nine-year period, fiscal years (FY) 2003-12, showed employment gains of 1,454,000 for whites (W), 941,000 for blacks (B), 2,063,000 for Asians (A) and 4,651,000 for Hispanics of All Races (HAR)1.


More discrete unpublished BLS figures paint a different picture. Employment of non-Hispanic whites (NHW) actually declined by 1,936,000 during the nine-year period. Non-Hispanic blacks (NHB) gained 346,000, while employment of non-Hispanic Asians (NHA), and Hispanics (HAR) rose by 1,873,000 and 4,651,000, respectively.2 NOTE: Hereafter, when I refer to whites, blacks, or Asians, I will be referring to non-Hispanic whites, blacks, or Asians.


During the five years FY 2003-08 employment rose among whites and blacks but at a slower pace than for Asians and Hispanics. However, a decline in white and black employment began in earnest during the challenging four years FY 2008-12, down by 4,399,000 and 462,000, respectively. Employment of Asians and Hispanics, on the other hand, grew by 790,000 and 1,694,000 respectively.

Why? For starters, I’d guess low-paying jobs in fast-food and hotel /motel establishments, once filled by black and white youths, are now being supplied by adult Asian and Hispanic immigrants.

Here’s the kicker. Employment is only one factor in the civilian labor force picture. The economy must grow at a rate sufficient to employ a growing population of workers, whether native-born, immigrant, illegal alien, or guest worker. In the same four years that employment among the four ethno-racial groups fell by 2,377,000, the civilian labor force grew by 9,412,000. These are additions to the real and potential labor force I mentioned above.



The Census Bureau projects there will be 129 million more people living in America by 2050. It’s estimated, at least 75 percent will be the result of immigration and the children new immigrants bear here. Moreover, Census also finds that in 2010, net births over deaths stood at 1,682,000 and Net International Migration (NIM) at 1,338,000. By 2050, however, Census projects a reversal — net births over deaths will decline to 1,404,000 while NIM will grow to 2,047,000.3

Census (2008) projects whites and blacks will not be much of a factor in our population growth, growing over 40 years by just 16 million. The Hispanic population, alone, will grow by 83 million or 267 percent during the same period.


These are projections and assume we will continue on the current path. If we do, however, the only certainties are that immigration will soon be politically beyond our control and our environment will suffer grievously.

How do we count?

BLS statistics are largely based on information developed by the Census Bureau. However, each agency comes up with very different Race /Hispanic percentages.

Hate Crimes

The problem is not limited to BLS and Census. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), for example, has been recording hate crimes since 1995. The 8,208 victims in 2010 were divided among 22 racial, religious, sexual, and ethnic groups, but offenders were only divided among 5 racial groups. We learn, for example, that 697 whites and 747 Hispanics were victims of hate crimes in 2010. We also learn that whites were known offenders in 3,522 cases. But the FBI has no way to report how many of these white offenders were actually white Hispanic offenders.

Suspicion is raised a notch when one considers that of the ten persons currently on the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted list, five are Hispanic whites and five are non-Hispanic whites. Hate crime may be a useful distinction, but the FBI’s Hate Crime statistics are a worthless exercise in PC.

Federal statistics, part of the problem

Census cranks out literally millions of tables detailing the races and ethnicities of residents for every federal, state, and local political jurisdiction. Fixing residents in their racial and ethnic identities makes them less likely to assimilate. More and more, politicians get elected by appealing to racial and ethnic differences. Ethnic “leaders” move “their people” ahead based on electoral clout, not merit and love of country. This is a program of tribalization that is profoundly un-American and which endangers the unity and political stability of our nation.

Anybody can be an American. We have succeeded with massive immigration only because immigrants have assimilated. This means speaking English and adopting the American culture. It means identifying with the soldiers at Valley Forge, First Manassas, and Guadalcanal — the rule of law and “America, the last best hope of mankind.” ■


* “We [Latinos] will take over house by house, block by block. We may not overcome, but we will overwhelm.”
—Xavier Hermosillo, talk show host, September, 1992, Sacramento, California

1. U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Tables A-1, A-2, A-3, Employment status of the civilian population and the Hispanic population, end of September 2003 to End of September 2011.

2. U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Table 3, Employment status of the civilian non-institutional population by detailed age, sex, and detailed Hispanic or Latino and non-Hispanic ethnicity, end of September 2003 and 2011.

3. U.S. Census, Table 1, Projections of the Population and Components of Change for the United States: 2010 to 2050.

4. Comparison of published and unpublished stats.

5. Census Brief, Overview of Race and Hispanic Origin: 2010, Table 2.

About the author

William Buchanan is legislative director of the American Council for Immigration Reform (ANCIR) based in Washington, D.C.