That is not your Ball, says the Owner.
I found it, I say. We agreed that if I found a ball then it was mine.
The Moral Dog did not find that Ball, says the Owner, he stole it.
That is an Oxymoron, I say. No Moral Dog would steal a ball.
I know one who would, says the Owner.
If he did he would not be Moral, I say, so your Oxymoron is Philosophically Impossible.
Where did the Moral Dog find the Ball? Asks the Owner.
It was abandoned, I say. It met all the Objective Criteria that Constitute Abandonment. It sat, alone and Dog Free on the Grass. Things which are Abandoned have no Owner, I say. This is the origin of the old term ‘Finders Keepers,’ I say. This is one of the Principles of the Law regarding Treasure, I say. These are principles which go back to Roman Law and have been a feature not only of the English Common Law but of jurisdictions worldwide, I say. In such law a thing abandoned is res nullius which means it is nobody’s thing and so can become the property of any passing Moral Dog. It is also applied to Wild Animals, I say, although I have not yet discussed the matter with a Squirrel, owing to their Cheating Vertical Escape, and the Fox in the Cemetery says she sees some Philosophical Problems with the Concept.
Methinks the Moral Dog doth Protest Too Much, says the Owner.
I cannot think what you mean, I say.
I know that the Moral Dog knows it was not an Abandoned Ball, says the Owner.
An Owner cannot possible know what the Moral Dog knows, I say, you are not the Late Great Paul Daniels and Cannot Read My Mind.
Your Mind may be Impenetrable, says the Owner, but the Guilt of a Moral Dog is not only in the mind. A Moral Dog Feeling the Scene of the Crime Oozes Guilt.
I cannot believe you would accuse your Moral Dog of Oozing, I say.
It is because he is Moral that he Oozes, says the Owner. A Lesser Dog might trot away with a nonchalant Aspect as if the Ball in his jaws was Truly Abandoned. The Moral Dog, however, may Rationally Claim that the Ball appeared Abandoned, but in his Moral heart he knows it is not and the Guilt Leaks out. This must explain why the Moral Dog came charging round the corner with the Ball in his Mouth and the most Guilty Expression since he accidentally fell into the fridge even though it is three feet in the air.
It is, as they say, a Fair Cop.
Excuse me, says a Man. Has your Dog got our Ball?
I do believe he thought it was lost, says the Owner.
Sometimes being Moral is not as easy as it Looks.
Categories: dignity dog dog philosophy guilt
Hergest the Hound
I am a dog of many thoughts.
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