It's All About the Youth - Lay Down Your Guns Backstory


“People should stop gun violence… 

Because they’re hurting good people…

They’re hurting children…

And they're making children lose their parents”

Spoken Word - E. Thompson, Genesis School, KCMO:

Did you know that in Babylon America guns are the leading cause of death for children and teens since surpassing car accidents in 2020? 

Nearly 3,600 children died in gun-related incidents 2021. That’s about five children lost for every 100,000 children in the United States or one child every 7 minutes.  

It’s not to mention countless youth who are injured by guns, or who are exposed to or have lost parents or relatives to gun violence and the mental and emotional trauma that follows.  

No other comparable country in the world has this level of child mortality due to firearms.  

When I wrote the song between 2011 and 2013, 21 children under the age of 17 in Oakland alone lost their lives to gun violence.  Here are some of their tragic stories…

Children under 10 years old:

  • 16-month-old Drew Jackson and his father Andrew Jackson were fatally shot as they slept with family inside a Brookfield Village house when someone fired shots into a bedroom from outside. 8/11/2013.
  • 8-year-old Alaysha Carradine, 8 years old was killed during a sleepover at a friend’s house after someone rang the doorbell and riddled the apartment front door with gunfire as the girl walked toward it.  7/17/2013.
  • 5-year-old Gabriel Martinez was shot and killed while following his father, who was taking out the trash near the East Oakland taco truck he owned. 12/30/2011
  • 23-month-old Hiram Lawrence Jr. was shot in the head by a stray bullet while sitting in a car with his father during the filming of a rap video.  11/28/2011
  • 3-year-old Carlos Nava was killed in a drive by shooting, while his mother pushed him in a stroller on a two-block walk home on International Boulevard from the store.  08/08/2011


  • 15 year old Jubrille Jordan was shot and killed while walking with another teen near the Lion Creek Crossing housing estate. He aspired to be a teacher. 12/30/2012
  • Hadari Askari, aged 15, was gunned down in the parking lot of his housing complex.  He was a high school junior and an Oakland fire department summer intern. 07/10/2012
  • Olajuwon Clayborn, 17; killed May 5, 86th Avenue and Dowling Street.  Olajuwon, a high school basketball player, was standing with another man and talking to a girl on the sidewalk outside his home when a gunman walked up and shot him. He was pronounced dead at 10:26 p.m. 05/05/2013

This is a plague of horrific proportions and for the sake of the youth, we must make every effort to create the change they deserve.  May the Almighty help us.

The new single ‘Lay Down Your Guns’ is an attempt to raise the consciousness of the people toward change.  

Visit the music page to listen, download and link to Spotify and other digital outlets.

“Sounds wickedly wonderful!  🔥You rock… Your voice is stellar and your message is strong.”  - DJ Tiffany Harmon, Joy in the Morning 

  • Queen Makedah’s new single  🔥 ‘Lay Down Your Guns’ is available on all digital outlets! To LISTEN | SAVE | STREAM | DOWNLOAD | SHARE visit  1❤️💛💚
  • Please remember to 👍 LIKE, FOLLOW, SHARE, SUBSCRIBE on all social media platforms @queenmakedah
  • To support the work, consider becoming a PATRON | taking a HEBREW CLASS | or DONATE.  Links at  

Thank You!  1❤️💛💚 

#yah #Jah #rootsreggae #reggaemusic #conscioushiphop #EndGunViolence #stoptheviolence


Leave a comment