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Publication Date

Fall 2015

Degree Type

Thesis - Campus Access Only

Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts (MFA)


English and Comparative Literature


Cathleen Miller


Chris Krohn, Homeless, medical marijuana, Peace, progressive, Santa Cruz

Subject Areas

Creative writing; Political science; History


Community activist and newly elected mayor Chris Krohn struggles to fight Santa Cruz city hall from within. He wards off rabid building developers, real estate leeches, and several self-absorbed business owners. The stakes are high and the balance of power has tilted toward the political elites: downtown and beach area development is out of control, environmental troubles abound, and university growth needs addressing. After his election, Mayor Krohn invites in those who are not used to having a voice at the government table: teenagers, immigrants, the homeless, affordable-housing advocates, and environmentalists of all stripes. This crusading mayor portrays what a modern day municipal bully pulpit looks like. When the budget goes south and city funds get tight, he puts his political weight behind social initiatives that put him squarely in the spotlight of the national news: the city council loudly rejects President George W. Bush’s Iraq invasion plans; Mayor Krohn helps oversee a marijuana club’s weekly medicine distribution on the steps of city hall to protest the Drug Enforcement Agency’s (DEA) violent raid on a local pot farm; and as his term is winding down he gets behind an initiative that community groups bring forward to demand rescinding the USA PATRIOT Act. Dangerous Mayor is a poignant and gripping work of narrative nonfiction, a how-to manual on local politics, and a call for resident involvement in local government.