The proliferation of can’t

  • You can’t use your internet connection for whatever you want
  • You can’t tell those people how you build your rocket. I mean, my God man, what if the Europeans find out how we build rockets.  Oh the humanity!
  • You can’t share that video with your friends
  • You can’t eat that, it’ll make you fat so we’ve made it illegal for you to buy it
  • You can’t install that app on your phone, it cuts into our ego.  Don’t you know we’re Apple you idiot?
  • You can’t have unlimited bandwidth on that cell phone plan, when we said unlimited we meant 5GB
  • You can’t explore that planet without a permit
  • You can’t play OUTSIDE in the neighborhood, ALONE!  You’re 10, you can go outside by yourself when you’re older.
  • You can’t collect rainwater without permission (are you freaking kidding me?)
  • You can’t build a rocket engine in your garage despite what you saw in that October Sky movie, what are you a damn terrorist or something?

Can’t can’t can’t can’t.

Rules don’t scale.

I bought a Kind bar today because it seemed more healthy than a Snickers.  On the package it says:

  • Gluten Free
  • Wheat Free
  • Dairy Free
  • Non GMO
  • etc

When did we start buying things because of what’s NOT in them?

How can we tell our kids to explore, invent, and innovate if they have to operate inside a strict set of rules designed to protect what we have now?  If we spend all of our energy protecting what we have now, isn’t there a danger that we’ll deny ourselves the future we want?

I’m a CAN kind of person.  I look for what’s in things, not what’s excluded.  I look for what CAN be done.  My kids are allowed to explore and take risks.

I’ve broken up with CAN’T.

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