Mary Campbell Gallagher

SELECTED WORK

Mary Campbell Gallagher's Publications on Public Speaking
Op-ed arguing that Title IX and basketball are responsible for Sarah Palin's extraordinary skills as a platform speaker.
Mary Campbell Gallagher's Publications on Cities
Op-ed by Mary Campbell Gallagher arguing against government plans to build towers in Paris.
Polls show that Parisians oppose towers by between 55 and 60 per cent. The Mayor and City Council, however, plan to construct their own commercial and residential towers. In BonjourParis.com.
Mary Campbell Gallagher's Publications on Cities
Op-ed arguing that at Atlantic Yards Mayor Bloomberg and developer Bruce Ratner are gambling with the character of Brooklyn and with citizens' homes and businesses. The project may fail, but no politician will ever pay the price at the polls.
Op-ed highlighting the mammoth out-of-scale size of the Atlantic Yards project and the fact that Atlantic Yards is entirely a creation of politician and developer avarice. This city treats its neighborhoods as just "products," to be offered for sale to corporations for condos and office buildings. No one consulted the citizens of New York City.
Op-ed arguing that while Wal-Mart and Ikea promise to "create" jobs, they in fact destroy jobs, instead.
Op-ed demonstrating that big box Ikea's promises to the residents of Red Hook Houses are false, and suggesting that an Ikea store in Red Hook will cause suburban problems like sprawl and congestion while eliminating the lively variety we enjoy in cities.
Mary Campbell Gallagher'sPublications on Cities
Essay-Book Review. An argument for strengthening the manufacturing sector in New York City
Essay about New York City's Central Park in spring.
Critical memoir of New York City student life in Greenwich Village in the Fifties.
Selected Publications on Legal Topics
Selected Publications on Legal Topics
Study guide for bar candidates teaches them how to raise their scores on the bar exam essays: 80 actual state bar exam questions, plus answers in Dr. Gallagher's format.
Op-Ed essay arguing that in the Abscam cases the F.B.I. may have manipulated conversations on audiotapes to produce falsified evidence in prosecutions of politicians.
Feature article setting out pros and cons of a statutory parental consent requirement for teen-agers' abortions. Includes many interviews with advocates for both sides.
Feature article with interviews with state bar examiners, showing how students should structure their bar exam essays
Selected Publications on Schools and Teaching
Full-length feature article cum memoir on the history of the Curriculum Reform Movement of the 1960s. Contains interviews with key participants in that historic era in American education.

"This Park is Central," Commonweal,
22 April 1994, p. 30.


Following the path of a woozy mastodon of old, I cross Central Park from upper east to upper west each morning, and from upper west to upper east each afternoon.

The park is its own country, bigger than Monaco, the undulating green valley amidst the mountains of Manhattan. Crossing in the morning, past the Trefoil Arch, along the Terrace, past Bethesda Fountain, along the drive, I pass every day a serious Frenchman hustling intently from west to east. He has a young boy on each hand, one fluttering like a jib, both chattering to Papa as they go, their buckled black book bags flapping on their backs, their free hands rapidly gesticulating, as Papa leads them along.

There are camera-bearing tourists in the morning, in serious groups, who scrutinize me as an object of study as they troop into the park from the subway stop at 72nd Street and Central Park West. Their eyes are focused straight ahead, their backs are to that elegant monument, the Dakota.

On these spring days, the park is speckled with golden forsythia. In the afternoon, in small rustic gazebos with benches by the side of the lake, there are book bags thrown down, and couples talking seriously together. The Vaux iron bridges reach from one side of the lake to the other, carrying children with their dogs, and from the other side back, with a traffic of elderly German couples on promenade.

By the Bethesda Fountain, as usual, there is an advertising shoot in progress, with two tanned perfectionists in flawlessly pressed chinos, poised against the lake as background, being teased by a blue-jeaned photographer and his black-clad crew, all laughing.

As I approach the east side, which at this time of day and this latitude is the children's side, I see the wee folk clambering over the statue of Hans Christian Andersen, and I hear violin music from the far side of the boat basin.

There I find an elderly violinist in shining black playing to orchestral backgrounds ribboning out of his tape player. He is surrounded by babies, mothers, nannies, a young woman with two white Samoyeds, an oblivious crowd sitting at the small bar by the boathouse, luxuriating in the sunlit breezes. A tiny little boy in a down vest dances joyfully at the violinist's feet. The violinist, intelligent and benign, peers alertly down through his horn-rimmed bottle glasses with the diffident geniality of a Life senior editor, and plays on.

From here in the middle of the park, the tall buildings of Manhattan sparkle in the distance, clean and humane. Here I see no homeless, no prostitutes. There are no buildings beyond the scale of Belvedere Castle and the boathouse. The tallest and worst of the towers in the distance may look from the street as cold and claustrophobic as a Frigidaire, but from the park it is the turret of a castle glimmering in the sunlight.

It is a magical view, but not majestic, across the meadow to the towers below 59th Street, across the park to Central Park West and Fifth Avenue. It makes the walker feel privileged, like a visitor behind stage at the Metropolitan Opera, or like a welcome guest on a great estate. Unlike the view from a tall building, it is without grandiosity. If Satan had wished to tempt Jesus with modern Manhattan, he might have taken Him to the World Trade Center. No one could be tempted to power, standing in the welcoming forsythia-blooming magic circle of an April afternooon in Central Park.
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Mary Campbell Gallagher, a graduate of Harvard Law School, teaches other lawyers how to write.

© Copyright Mary Campbell Gallagher, 1994.