Thanks for all the thoughtful e-mails. Here are two good pro-ad ones (rendered, of course, spaceless).
E-mail: ”These ads are targeted to kids. It is routine and probably advisable to overstate the arguments against something harmful when you are talking to kids….The cost of kids involving themselves with drugs and drug culture is potentially their life. In that sense, the gun going off is a metaphor, not a probable outcome.”
E-mail: “i am a prosecutor in California. While you think the ad regarding the gun is ridiculous, it really happens. One case that comes to mine sent the shooter away for manslaughter after he shot one of his best friends while they were smoking marijuana in a van and decided to play with a gun. the fact that you disagree with the philosphy underlying the ads doesn’t mean that the situations don’t happen. (i don’t know, but i’ve seen most of the ads and all of the situations they portray are real-life scenarios we’ve seen in my office). . . . doesn’t mean that you are going to kill someone just because you smoke pot, but not every drunk driver crashes, either. Should we not publicize the carnage caused by some drunk drivers because it misrepresents the impact of all drunk drivers?”