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AROUND THE SOUTH BAY

December 20, 1987|SEBASTIAN ROTELLA

Civil disobedience in the '80s can be both fun and effective, Inglewood City Councilman Daniel Tabor has decided.

But you have to dress for it.

Tabor and other elected officials from around the country participated in a demonstration at the Nevada Test Site last weekend urging the federal government to halt nuclear-missile testing if the Soviets follow suit.

After attending the National League of Cities Conference in Las Vegas, Tabor and other officials went to a Sunday rally at the desert site organized by the SANE/FREEZE anti-nuclear coalition and the Local Elected Officials Project for Social Responsibility. (The latter group wrote a document in support of a nuclear test ban called the Nevada Declaration; its signers include the entire Inglewood City Council and several other South Bay officials.)

Then came the grand finale: Demonstrators linked arms and entered the test site as a statement of protest. They were arrested, handcuffed, placed in a detention bus, issued tickets for trespassing and released.

"They were those plastic-type handcuffs," Tabor said. "Not the metal kind."

Tabor, 32, is a veteran of civil rights sit-ins as a college student and of more recent anti-apartheid protests. He said the Nevada event underscored the need for activism that relates local issues to national and international concerns.

"Local elected officials need to get involved in foreign policy in creative ways," Tabor said. "There's not enough money for cities because of the high priority military spending gets. And the bomb is non-discriminatory: it's not just going to wipe out military bases."

Unfortunately, Tabor took on the military-industrial complex without considering the weather. His jacket and Lakers cap were no match for 27-degree temperatures and 35-mile-an-hour winds. He spent the next 24 hours in bed with migraine headaches and a case of dehydration.

"Next time, and there will be a next time," he said, "I will be bundled up and ready."

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