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94                                      Jack Fritscher, Ph.D.
            magazines, made Drummer ever more masculinist — although Drummer
            was never ever separatist.
               In fact, between 1987-1990, nearly every issue of Drummer addressed
            the “civil wars” in the leather community which I had dramatized in
            Some Dance to Remember. (I’ve always been more “Cowboy Up!” than
            “Kumbaya.”) Sadly, AIDS-era publisher DeBlase tried to please everyone
            and broker some civility and make a buck. His misguided “kumbaya
            pages” ate up precious column inches that should have been filled with
            Drummer’s famous erotic writing. The gender war, not the earthquake,
            was the main reason DeBlase’s Drummer tanked, sales fell, and he had to
               In Drummer 100 (August 1987), eyewitness Judy Tallwing McCar-
            thy, International Ms. Leather 1987, lamented the “uncivil war” in
            her guest editorial calling astutely for unity rather than separatism. In
            Drummer 107 (August 1987), page 7, eyewitness Dane Leathers aka Mike
            Leathers, who was on the Drummer staff for a dozen years, wrote: “Educa-
            tional organizations such as GMSMA [Gay Men’s SM Activists] and [the]
            Janus Society . . . tend to attract groupies and petty power-junkies more
            than stable teachers.”
               In Drummer 133 (September 1989), page 32, Sal Vittore wrote an
            editorial calling for unity in the leather community: “What’s going on
            here? Is it now to be you’re gay, but you’re not gay enough?”
               That interested me because that is the charge most often leveled
            against me by vanilla queens — that I am not “gay enough.” Leather col-
            umnist Mr. Marcus and others in the gay press have written about that
            as irony. In the same Drummer 133, page 33, Paul Martin published a
            flyer purportedly distributed at the Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival
            by a group called “Seps [Separatists] Against Sadomasochism.” Martin
            responded: “I won’t go into the issue of Lesbian Separatism here. Suffice
            it to say that stupidity knows no gender.”
                In Drummer 134 (October 1989), managing editor Joseph W. Bean
            wrote a two-page editorial, pages 4-5, refuting the anti-leather book After
            the Ball: How America Will Conquer Its Fear and Hatred of Gays in the
            90s. Written by two allegedly homophobic gay men, Marshall Kirk and
            Hunter Madsen, After the Ball was a mainstream queer book that pro-
            posed that the leather community should disappear. So virulent was the
            Kirk-Hunter attack that Bean editorialized a “Know Your Enemy” cam-
            paign against the book a year later in Drummer 144 (November 1990).
               Drummer 138 (March 1990) was a satirical issue. The reader had to
            flip it upside down and backwards, literally, to open the “front cover” of
            the post-earthquake Naugahyde magazine Dummer. My initial proposal
            had been to title it Dumber as a parody of the movie Dumb and Dumber.

          ©Jack Fritscher, Ph.D., All Rights Reserved—posted 05-05-2017
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