THE OCTAGON, Amherst, Ma. – Amherst College Police have confirmed that Professor Hadley Arkes’s 2009 Buick Enclave suffered minor damage last Tuesday when he inadvertently backed it into the logic of morals itself. According to the police report, Arkes was seen leaving The Octagon at 3:22 p.m., following his lecture for his signature course, “Political Obligations.” “His car was backing out just fine when, all of a sudden, its bumper smashed in and it stopped abruptly,” reported Steven Osman ’15. “Even though we’re only in the sixth week of the course, it was pretty clear to me that he must have accidentally come upon the necessary truth that all men are created equal.”
Added Osman ’15, “I don’t even think you could say it was his fault, really. When you think about it, it was pretty much unavoidable”.
Asked for comment, Arkes admitted that the entire incident was due to oversight on his part. “I was preoccupied with returning a call to my good friend Nino [Antonin Scalia] and did not realize I had lifted my foot ever so slightly off of the brake. It was a terrible error in judgment and I soon found myself slowly backing into the understanding laid down by Aristotle in The Politics.”
Although Arkes expressed relief that the low speed involved subjected his vehicle to damage “merely cosmetic, empirical, and wholly lacking in moral import,” he reported that at no time was he seriously concerned for the well-being of the logic of morals itself, which he described as “inflexible, immutable, and not subject to relativistic concerns such as time, place, or proximity to a motor vehicle.”