How much do laws cost? More than these ads

June 5, 2014

Imagine if you could get a receipt for the cost of creating a law. The receipt would, no doubt, be many feet long. If we stacked up all the expenses of money and time required to make an idea into a law into a reality, you’d wind up with a large sum of dollars and hours. For laws that ask us to change some behavior, the question then is, is it worth it? Is the cost of creating and enforcing a law worth whatever changes in citizen behavior it causes?

Then there are other, non-legal ways to change behavior. This is where social issue ads come in. Check out these, aggregated by Bored Panda. Here are a few:

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What laws frequently fail to capitalize on is the strength of human emotion to influence how we act. These ads win at that, for a whole lot less. The question is, do they work?

Simon Seiver is a student at Yale University and Life of the Law’s intern.