"Make It Stop (September's Children)" as written by Zach Blair, Joseph Principe, Timothy Mcilrath and Brandon Barnes....
Whoa, whoa.

Bang bang go the coffin nails, like a breath exhaled,
Then gone forever.
It seems like just yesterday, how did I miss the red flags raise?

Think back to the days we laughed.
We braved these bitter storms together.
Then brought to his knees he cried,
But on his feet he died.

What God would damn a heart?
And what God drove us apart?

What God could make it stop?
Let this end.
Eighteen years pushed to the ledge.
It's come to this,
A weightless step.
On the way down singing,
Whoa, whoa.

Bang bang from the closet walls,
The schoolhouse halls,
The shotgun's loaded.
Push me and I'll push back.
I'm done asking, I demand.

From a nation under God,
I feel it's love like a cattle prod.
Born free, but still they hate.
A born me, no I can't change

It's always darkest just before the dawn.
So stay awake with me, let's prove them wrong.

Make it stop.
Let this end,
Eighteen years pushed to the ledge.
It's come to this,
A weightless step.
On the way down singing
Whoa, whoa.

The cold river washed him away,
But how could we forget.
The gatherings hold candles, but not their tongues.

And too much blood has flown from the wrist,
Of the children shamed for those they chose to kiss.
Who will rise to stop the blood.
We're calling for,
Insisting on, a different beat, yeah.
A brand new song, whoa, oh
A brand new song, whoa, whoa, whoa

(Whoa) Make it stop.
Let this end,
This life chose me, I'm not lost in sin
(Whoa) And proud I stand, of who I am,
I plan to go on living

(Whoa) Make it stop.
Let this end,
All these years pushed to the ledge
(Whoa) But proud I stand, of who I am,
I plan to go on living


Lyrics submitted by WillCreary, edited by Robey0t

"Make It Stop (September's Children)" as written by Joseph Principe Brandon Barnes

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

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Make It Stop (September's Children) song meanings
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  • +10
    General CommentAmazing song. I'm consistantly amazed by these guys. To stand up for the tolerance of everyone (gays being the main focus here) takes a special kind of band, and leave it to Tim and the band to do so. This song gives me chills every time I hear this. Reading the names of the kids who committed sucide towards the end is incredibly powerful too. Great song, great album.
    wsoxfan1214on March 11, 2011   Link
  • +9
    My OpinionFrom what i know of tim mcilrath and rise against from the years i've loved them i am certain he isn't attacking god, he is attacking the system that allows these deeds to be inflicted on innocent people. it's a challenge to change our way of thinking as a civilisation and world and as a human race. it most definitely is not against god. tim is all about tolerence, acceptance and compassion shown to all
    resist360on April 10, 2011   Link
  • +6
    General CommentI'm just putting this out there but I don't think the song is about sexual discrimination based on their sexual preference. I mean many lyrics in the song seem to support this but I think the song is about suicide in general due to bullying and even worse then just suicide.

    "The schoolhouse halls
    The shotgun's loaded
    Push me and i'll push back"

    These lines seem to give me the idea of those massacres in America of when students have walked through and killed other students. I think the song is saying that these people were driven by being bullying. I don't think the song is justifying their deeds but I think its saying that Bullying is what caused this in some cases. Don't get me wrong this is only an idea it can be wrong or right.
    Indieboy2506on March 18, 2011   Link
  • +6
    My Opinion@elemele Okay, you're a homophobic twat. K?

    And your logic sucks, a child's life won't be f*cked up if he/she is brought up to believe in equality and sexuality acceptance.

    Unlike someone like you, who I hope very deeply has never met a homosexual. They're just normal people, I sincerely hope they didn't have to put up with your out-of-date, homophobic, illogical, hate-filled rubbish.

    Anyway, onto the song. Love it. Powerful songs like this from RA are what makes them by far my favorite artist, bloody love them! haha

    And the bit where it goes "what God would damn a heart"... so true. I'm an atheist, and the idea of a God that would hate on his own creations like this is sickening and EVIL. Fortunately society is changing and less and less people everyday believe in this hate-filled God.

    Ahh, and finally- @uprisingknight, if you really believe in a different God to that of the one in the Bible then are you really Christian? No. If you want to morph the Christian beliefs into your own, that's fine, but that does logically mean you're not a Christian anymore. Just pointing that out.

    /rant

    Anyway yeah awesome song, <3 Rise Against!
    ClutchHunteron June 14, 2011   Link
  • +5
    General CommentI am a Christian, and personally I believe it is wrong to be gay. However, I think it's an absolute atrocity that as a culture we persecute gays. I appreciate Rise Against exposing the horrors that a mindless, thoughtless culture causes. Whether or not you believe it is okay to be gay we should all walk beside the gay people, helping them, not chastising them.
    jc99taon April 01, 2011   Link
  • +3
    General Commentelemele its people like you that lead to incidents like this, what is wrong with you? im glad rise against did this song, one of the best off the cd and its about the suicides of the kids they say in the song, mainly tyler clementi. this song really opened my eyes and realized how screwed up sum people are, bullying someone just because of the sexual preferences
    swanemyr98on June 03, 2011   Link
  • +3
    My InterpretationBang bang go the coffin nails,
    Like a breath exhaled,
    Then gone forever.
    -- Obviously refers to someone dying (via suicide)

    It seems like just yesterday,
    How did I miss the red flags raise?
    -- After any seemingly preventable catastrophe, everyone asks what the "red flags" were, and why they were ignored. "Red flags" refer to warning signs

    Think back to the days we laughed
    We braved these bitter storms together.
    Brought to his knees he cried,
    But on his feet he died.
    -- The last line probably implies the preventable and self-inflicted nature of suicides. When somenoe bedridden and dying from a disease, no one says they died on their feet- their life is clearly being taken by forces outside of their control. In a suicide, however, the person has full control over the situation but makes the choice to kill themselves.

    What God would damn a heart?
    And what God drove us apart?
    What God could
    -- I'm not sure I would call this anti-religion- we've heard plenty of devout religious people question God in times of grief- but perhaps it is open to interpretation.

    Make it stop
    Let this end
    Eighteen years pushed to the ledge.
    -- One of the more poetic lines in the song, 18 years is how old Tyler Clemente was when he died. The line, of course, describes how he was bullied during his lifetime and was pushed closer to killing himself throughout his years.

    It's come to this,
    A weightless step.
    On the way down singing,
    Woah, woah.
    -- The weightless step describes the first step off the bridge, beginning Clemente's free fall to his demise.

    Bang bang from the closet walls,
    The schoolhouse halls,
    The shotgun's loaded.
    Push me and I'll push back.
    I'm done asking, I demand.
    -- Describes the much-publicized possibility for fatal retaliation from bullying victims.

    From a nation under God,
    I feel it's love like a cattle prod.
    Born free, but still they hate.
    Born me, no I can't change.
    -- Most of the song to this point has focused narrowly on the individual committing suicide and those grieving. But these few lines take a shot at U.S. society. The first line is from the Pledge of Allegiance, and mockingly points out that Americans are supposed to be loving of all people created by God. America also frequently spouts freedom as one of its core qualities, which Rise Against also questions. Finally, the last line comes right out and states the belief that homosexuals are born gay. The line doesn't flow well with the song, in my opinion, but it completes a logical argument that people who can't change who they are shouldn't be harassed, especially by those who claim to be freedom-loving.

    It's always darkest just before the dawn.
    So stay awake with me, let's prove them wrong.
    -- Perhaps the first empowering line in the song, this is the first taste of Rise Against imploring bullying victims to overcome their hardships.

    ...

    The cold river washed him away,
    But how could we forget.
    The gatherings hold candles
    But not their tongues.
    -- I'm not sure what this means. I'm positive it has an important meaning, though, especially the last two lines.

    And too much blood has flown from the wrists,
    Of the children shamed for those they chose to kiss.
    Who will rise to stop the blood.
    -- The first two lines express disgust (perhaps of both sides) of the many cases in which gays cut their wrists because of the mental anguish they receive from bullying because of their sexual orientation.

    We're calling for
    Insisting on
    A different beat, yeah
    A brand new song
    -- Rise Against answers the call from the previous line, saying they will aim to curb the bullying of gays.

    Woah, woah.
    (Tyler Clemente age 18)
    A brand new song
    Woah, woah.
    (Billy Lucas age 15)
    Woah, woah.
    (Harrison Chase Brown age 15)
    Woah, woah.
    (Cody J. Barker age 17)
    (Seth Walsh age 13)
    -- I don't know who the last four are, but it is clear that they are victims of bullying who have taken their lives.

    Make it stop.
    Let this end,
    This life chose me, I'm not lost in sin
    But proud I stand
    Of who I am
    I plan to go on living
    -- It is again reiterated that being gay isn't a choice. An uplifting trio of lines follows, in attempt to empower homosexuals to be proud of who they are.

    Make it stop.
    Let this end,
    All these years pushed to the ledge.
    But proud I stand
    Of who I am
    I plan to go on living
    -- It is no longer "18 years pushed to the ledge," perhaps because Rise Against is no longer talking about Tyler Clemente. They now are speaking to teenagers and young adults of all ages who are currently being bullied, acknowledging that they are being pushed to the ledge year by year. The trio of empowering lines is again repeated, ending the song on an uplifting note.


    That's my analysis, feel free to disagree or add anything you think I missed. This song touched me in a way I can hardly describe. I just can't bear to see and hear about bigoted violence in society today, and it's about time that society's more enlightened individuals make it stop. I'm a 21 year old straight guy who has only listened to this song twice, but I'll be sure to let you guys know the first time I'm able to listen to the entirety of this song without having tears stream down my face.

    God bless everyone- if you're not Christian, I hope it's not because conservative-leaning congregations have pushed you away. We're not all like that- some of us take it literally when Jesus told us to love everyone. Nonetheless, it shouldn't take a deity to convince people to treat others with respect. I just hope more people will remember that in the future.
    ADTR2014on July 16, 2011   Link
  • +3
    General CommentRise Against is awesome! Too few alt rock bands take a stand on social issues. "Help Is on the Way" was a scathing indictment about the tragedies inflicted on the people of the Gulf Coast. Now, "Make It Stop" is a poignant, moving statement about gay teen suicide...with an upbeat, hopeful ending!

    As a 53 year-old gay man who survived not only miserable teen years, but the AIDS crisis as well, I really applaud the guys in Rise Against for taking a stand on this issue. Sadly, there has been little attention paid to Rise Against in the gay media, except for something on the LOGO network. Unfortunately, most gay people I know have their heads up their asses when it comes to music. They listen to Lady Gaga and think she's gutsy for speaking out in support of gays (she knows who buys her music). On the other hand, Rise Against can influence the most important audience to reach with this message...the 18-24 year old male.

    The video for "Make It Stop" contains powerful images and was filmed at lead singer Tim's alma mater high school in Rolling Meadows, Illinois (the suburb next door to where I spent my miserable teens). I can't wait for Rise Against's next album!
    WilliamSFon December 04, 2011   Link
  • +2
    General CommentWOO, just did some research, I know EXACTLY what this song is about.
    This is about the suicide of Tyler Clementi, an 18-years-old gay college student whose roommate videoed him and another man having sex, and distributing it to his friends.
    Tyler committed suicide by jumping off a bridge.
    jluttrullon March 09, 2011   Link
  • +2
    General CommentI think he wrote it from the viewpoint of a gay child/adult who's saying they'll live proud of what they are. And riseagainstSOT was right. They say names in the background in the last verse too, but they're pretty drowned out.. Can anyone make them out?
    wsoxfan1214on March 13, 2011   Link

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