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P.O.D. - Youth of the Nation

[Verse 1]
Last day of the rest of my life
I wish, I would've known 'cause I didn't kiss my mama, goodbye!
I didn't tell her that I loved her, how much I cared
Or thank my pops for all the talks and all the wisdom he shared
Unaware, I just did what I always do
Every day the same routine before I skate off to school
But who knew that this day wasn't like the rest?
Instead of takin' a test, I took two to the chest
Call me blind, but I didn't see it comin'
Everybody was runnin', but I couldn't hear nothin'
Except gun blasts, it happened so fast
I don't really know this kid, though I sit by him in class
Maybe this kid was reachin' out for love
Or maybe for a moment he forgot who he was
Or maybe this kid just wanted to be hugged
Whatever it was, I know it's because

[Chorus]
We are, we are (we are) the youth of the nation
We are, we are (we are) youth of the nation
We are, we are (we are) the youth of the nation
We are, we are (we are) youth of the nation

[Verse 2]
Little Suzy, she was only twelve
She was given the world with every chance to excel
Hang with the boys and hear the stories they tell
She might act kind of proud, but no respect for herself
She finds love in all the wrong places
The same situations just different faces
Changed up her pace since her daddy left her
Too bad he never told her, she deserved much better
Johnny boy always played the fool
He broke all the rules, so you would think he was cool
He was never really one of the guys
No matter how hard he tried, often thought of suicide
It's kind of hard when you ain't got no friends
He put his life to an end, they might remember him then
You cross the line and there's no turning back
Told the world how he felt with the sound of a gat

"Youth of the Nation" was a hit single from P.O.D. in 2002. It was the second single to come from their album, Satellite. It was inspired in part by the school shootings at Santana High School and Columbine High School. Speaking with Songfacts.com about this song in a 2012 interview, lead singer Sonny Sandoval said: "When we were actually writing the record for Satellite, we were two blocks away from the Santee high school shootings. We had taken a break and went out for some coffee, and we see all the fire trucks and the police department and the helicopters and news. And we're like, something's going on. We turn on the TV and all of a sudden there's a young kid who has trapped everybody inside the school and he's shooting. Here we are, glued to the TV and we're literally two blocks away. All this is going down, and here we were supposed to write music. It kind of just set the tone for how we felt that day." While Satellite contained numerous hit songs, "Youth of the Nation" was the band's only #1 hit on the Modern Rock chart and reached #28 on the Billboard Hot 100. The song's inspiration stems from a trip when the band was on their way to record for Satellite. They were held up in traffic and discovered that the reason was a school shooting. The album was consequently delayed and they were inspired to write "Youth of the Nation." The song follows three distinct characters in assorted problems they face common to American youth.

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