This large number of Australians working and visiting the USA illustrates how many Australians are enjoying their lives in the land of milk and honey.
I am personally aware of Australians working in the US in the sciences, in sport, in oil, in administration, Christian churches and evangelism, and more.
A call for young Australians to boycott the US after a horrific murder is certainly understandable but to change the dreams of the young to experience the US can hardly be legislated against.
The US murder (homicide) rate per 100,000 population is 4.7. This list provides a broad scope with these selected number: Honduras 91.6, Ivory Coast 56.9, Zambia is 38, Uganda is 36.3, Malawi is 36.1, Australia is 1 and New Zealand 0.9. (en.wikipedia.org)
Eastern African nations on this list have horrific murder statistics. The US statistics however are not to be confused with the per population statistics. The US has around 300 million people. 4.7 rates per 100,000 population represents 14,100 murders.
As most US murders are in cities, one statistic illustrates there are some 90 murders in each major US city every year. These murder rates can again be divided into domestic, crime and misadventure murders.
The random rate of murders (misadventure) as happened in late August with Australian young baseballer Tim Lane has a minimal annual statistic compared to domestic and crime murders. In almost every US crime television program – such as Law and Order as just one of the plethora, 99.9% are cases related to domestic or crime murders. (www.abc.net.au)
In real life these are part of the American way and although they create a news heading for a day or two, in effect they are part and parcel of life lived in either the opulence of US life or the poverty of US life. But murder by misadventure is realistically a rare phenomenon compared to the other two but they draw the greatest media attention.
When such a call comes
So when a call came for young Australians to boycott the US it was not on the basis of a statistical analysis rather of this heartbreak situation of a young man jogging along the roadway and gunned down for the heck of it.
It is also acknowledged that for this young man the statistic was 100%. The distress and frustration and dismay of family, loved ones and friends can never be underestimated. Like those of the holocaust, the irrecoverable is unbearable, the loss can never be brought back. It is forever.
In spite of all this, those who have experienced such loss must go on and find a strength that acknowledges loss but somehow manages to keep going. Christians experience the same horror but have an additional means whereupon to cry out in solace from an inner strength provided by the Holy Spirit.
The human experience as associated with David's heartbreak words with the death of his son of whom he had so much hope toward : "Absalom, my son Absalom" - is true of us all amidst tears and wrench of spirit.
For the Christian there is something other, when one so young is taken and who followed the Lord, a confidence and an assurance of an eternal destiny which brings with us a quiet still small voice.
Dr Mark Tronson is a Baptist minister (retired) who served as the Australian cricket team chaplain for 17 years (2000 ret) and established Life After Cricket in 2001. He was recognised by the Olympic Ministry Medal in 2009 presented by Carl Lewis Olympian of the Century. He has written 24 books, and enjoys writing. He is married to Delma, with four adult children and grand-children.
Mark Tronson's archive of articles can be viewed at