Having recently reproduced, I have found myself singing a lot of children’s songs. I was distressed recently to notice what seems to be a logical contradiction in the ‘Teddy Bears’ Picnic’ song. I don’t have many expectations for my daughter, but I couldn’t bear the idea that she would grow up failing to respect norms of rationality. Therefore, I won’t be singing that song to her again.
I happened to post this finding on Facebook, expecting, perhaps, that my mum would like it (she’s a big fan of the law of non-contradiction). To my surprise, there was great interest, and some of the greatest philosophical minds on the planet took it upon themselves to solve this paradox and rescue the teddy bear’s picnic from the philosophical dustbin. It’s possible that I’ve happened upon a whole new branch of philosophy, and so I’ve embedded this high-level discussion in this post. (I was intending to compile a taxonomy of the various proposals, but then I realised I can’t be bothered).