Page 56 - Gay Pioneers: How Drummer Shaped Gay Popular Culture 1965-1999
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38       Gay Pioneers: How Drummer Shaped Gay Popular Culture 1965-1999

               studded arm bands...labeled in a police report as “sado-masochis-
               tic” paraphernalia.
                   ...about 175 people were attending the “auction.” ...the slave
               then became the property of the buyer for 24 hours. Captain Wilson
               said....“you can rent paddles there so you keep your slave in line. You
               can put them in leather harnesses fashioned in a bizarre manner for
               restraint. It’s a very humiliating experience.” Another police spokes-
               man said about 65 officers took part in the raid and witnessed
               acts of copulation and sodomy before the auction... Bail was set at
               about R 4 250 [South African currency]. Conviction could bring a
               prison sentence of one to 10 years. “Gay community” spokesman,
               Mr. Morris Night [sic; Morris Kight, Los Angeles gay pioneer, one
               of the founders of the Gay Liberation Front]...denounced the raid
               as politically motivated and termed it “appalling and excessive.” He
               said the event was “harmless fun” to raise money for “gay” activi-
               ties...similar to high school and college slave auctions....

               As a footnote, gay historians might find a legal insight into the Drummer
            Slave Auction in the ACLU Gay Rights Newsletter, September 1977, which
            featured the Slave Auction in its cover article, “The $200,000 Tragic Farce,”
            with a photograph of Jeanne Barney and Thomas Hunter Russell, calling
            “The Notorious ‘Mark IV Forty Slave Auction’ of the more
            blatant landmarks in the history of [LAPD] police paranoia with regards to
            the gay community.”
               Nearly twenty years later, Ben Attias published his analysis “Police
            Free ‘Gay Slaves’: Some Juridico-Legal Consequences of the Discursive
            Distinctions Between the Sexualities,” California State University, June 10,
               John Embry, after penning many short versions, finally wrote his own
            eyewitness narrative of the Slave Auction which he excerpted from his
            unpublished memoir, Epilogue, in Super MR #5 (2000), pages 34-39.


               Drummer ran 214 issues from Drummer 1 (June 1975) to Drummer
               214 (April 1999); Drummer officially quit business on Folsom Fair
               weekend, September 30, 1999.

              ©Jack Fritscher, Ph.D., All Rights Reserved—posted 03-16-2017
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