So far, my experiments have used the cat's battery powered laser pointer. Today, I disassembled a few laser pointers and powered laser modules directly from my bench power supply.
The green laser module was the brightest and looked the best. Also, I know it will be visible in the day time. According to the sticker that was on it, it is a "class III" and "<5mW", which I believe makes it a class 3R laser, which I'm happy with from a safety point of view.
However, it also draws between 250mA and 350mA, which is much more load than I want to put on the RPi's supply, especially since that load will be switched rapidly and repeatedly.
So, instead of using the output of the 3.3V LDO to supply the laser, I'll use a 12V wall adapter, along with an eBay buck converter module.