Garbage lead singer Shirley Manson wrote this song after being outraged by the treatment of black and indigenous people throughout the world. Penned long before the murder of George Floyd and the Black Lives matter movement, it originated with the 2012 killing in Florida of unarmed 17-year-old African American Trayvon Martin. The teen's shooting received international coverage because of the delay in charging his mixed-race assailer, George Zimmerman.
Manson told NME
she was shaken, sitting in her own "white privileged bubble," by the whole story. The singer started studying what was happening to Black citizens in America at the hands of the police. "Once you start paying attention, you see it happening almost every bloody day," she said. "I remember Philando Castile getting shot in his car and that awful footage of a man getting mowed down in his car for nothing."
That this was happening all the time made Manson really mad. The lyrics for "Waiting For God" started with her trying to articulate her feelings about systematic racism, and the more she read and viewed, the more angry she became.