The image, posted on the 500campaign’s Instagram page shows Keef sitting in a car with a female alongside the caption, “Angry Because Over 500 Were Murdered in Chicago.” The photo received so many negative comments that it was removed, but re-posted a day later.
Given his criminal record and glorification of gun violence and gang affiliations, some feel that the teenager is the last person whose face should be added to the cause. Yet campaign creator, Bryan Cross, believes that Keef, who was recently released from custody after serving a 60-day sentence for parole violation, belongs to the demographic that needs to be reached. “Chief Keef and brothers like him are the ones we should be engaging,” Cross told NBC Chicago. “If you can’t look at a photo and not be hostile—there’s no hope. We have to be able to engage everyone, not just the people we like.”
Cross is encouraging Chicago residents to email a headshot so that their images can be added to the caption. So far he’s gotten over 1,200 images, and received Keef’s photo a few weeks ago. The 28-year-old asserts that the “First Day Out” rapper gave consent to the person who forwarded him the image.
In addition to the online campaign, Cross is prepping an anti-violence rally on June 10, a day in the city, last year, when no one was killed.
Photo: NBC Chicago/Instagram