But more and more, our hands are tied, and it seems like there's always another piece of pending legislation promising to pull those ropes even tighter.
The city of Waterloo, Ontario, has just "outlawed" backyard chickens.
In Toronto (and some other Canadian cities) it's illegal to wash your own car, unless you collect up all the runoff and dispose of it properly. Good? Bad? Read the comments: opinions vary.
Some people in Canada (I can't track down the details right now, but Mr. Fixit heard about this on the radio) would like all "unhealthy" food to be banned in schools--whatever that is decided to mean. That includes what you pack in your own child's lunch. And heaven forbid you should send it in plastic wrap.
Mr. Fixit told me that in the European Union (including the United Kingdom), it's not only illegal to fix your own car, it's illegal to fix your own electronics (e.g. stereo components). Because of the soldering involved. And there is, according to his online friends, similar legislation
So is it better not to be able to fix things and let them go to the landfill? Not to be able to eat home-raised eggs? Not to be able to make a little money sewing baby slings, or to help someone else out by knitting teddies for a church bazaar?
And look out, homeschoolers--there are a lot of people out there who don't like us, either. Overgeneralizing? Maybe. But think about it.