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The subtle trade-off between personal freedom and social responsibility
  1. Francesco Zambon
  1. Francesco Zambon, Regional Centre for Epidemiology, Veneto Region, c/o Ospedale Castelfranco Veneto, Via Ospedale 18–31033, Italy; francesco.zambon{at}

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The recent debate in New Hampshire, the only US state that does not have a mandatory seatbelt law, about enacting an adult seatbelt legislation has become a matter of public domain.

Basically, the opponents see it as an infringement of personal liberty, rekindling a debate that has been common to many other issues, such as the ban on smoking, or infectious disease control.1 2

The question is what power a state should have to restrict the autonomy of individuals. …

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