‘Thou Shalt Not Kill’ Posters Returning To DC

 Posters bearing one of the 10 Commandments will be making a return to Washington, D.C., as the nation’s capital deals with a wave of gun violence.

Red-and-white cardboard signs that say “Thou shalt not kill” will be available to the public to pick up after a news conference set for Tuesday, according to WTOP.

Philip Pannell, executive director of the Anacostia Coordinating Council, said the D.C. mayor’s office is providing 1,000 posters and Andy Shallal, the founder of Busboys and Poets, is covering the costs of printing 2,000 posters, per the report.

The campaign is “something I think most people in the city can agree with, and is something they can support,” Pannell said.

More than 200 people lost their lives to violent crimes in the district last year, a toll D.C. Police Chief Robert Contee said is “completely unacceptable.”

D.C. crimes is spiking across multiple categories, including homicides, in the first days of this year as compared to the same time period in 2022, police data show.

Pannell said members of the community appear to be “desensitized” to the violence, underscoring a desire to bring back signs used in the past.

“Around 30 years ago, at the height of the crack epidemic, when we were also experiencing violence and homicides, then at-large Council member William Lightfoot printed-up some ‘Thou shalt not kill’ posters and put them throughout the city,” Pannell said.

He also said: “The message ‘Thou shalt not kill’ is just as powerful and just as relevant in 2023 as it was thousands of years ago.”

Following a launch event with community activists set for 11 a.m., the posters will be available to pick up in the lobby Busboys and Poets at 2004 Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue SE.

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