I had copies of MOST OUTRAGEOUS: THE TRIALS AND TRESPASSES OF DWAINE TINSLEY AND CHESTER THE MOLESTER sent to people I’d interviewed while researching it. One of these, who currently resides in state prison while serving a life sentence for a double homicide, has advised me that the authorities have denied him delivery because of "the offensive nature of the cartoons." (I suspect it’s the one with Chester with his mustard-lathered penis in a hot dog roll, trying to tempt a passing poppet; but it might be where he’s under the slide, tongue extruded for the nymphet dropping towards him.) "Banned by the California Department of Corrections" doesn’t have quite the same zip as "Banned in Boston," but it does bestow upon one a frisson of pride – while causing him to wonder exactly whom is being protected from precisely what.
In any event, rather than contest the decision, my interviewee has had the book routed to his daughter, who will re-mail it to him in twelve-page installments. The cartoons still may not make it, he says, but everything else should.
Causes Bob Levin Supports
Comic Book Legal Defense Fund, ACLU, PEN, Berkeley Emergency Food & Housing Project.