Let me be clear. I know this cannot be imposed in any form by a government or a law. I am proposing this simply as a guideline for current and future parents.
My arguments are as follows:
* Children in their early formative years are incapable of rational, informed thought. Their entire universe is structured around what their parents tell them.
If you tell them that the Earth is the shape of an upside down ice-cream cone and the sun is at the tip of it, they will believe you. Not just believe you, this will become their truth.
* As an adult, your religious beliefs directly influence the life you lead .
It will influence the decisions you make in terms of your life partner you choose, the company you keep, the vote you cast and the path you take in life.
It should not affect these things in an ideal world, but we do not live in such an ideal world.
* Considering the vast impact that your religious beliefs have, it seems very unfair to have one particular strict, unflinching dogma drilled into you during your formative years as a kid.
Religion should be a choice just like your hobbies, your friends and your career.
* You may argue that many of us were raised this way, and we eventually "grew out of it" or changed our views once we reached maturity and broadened our horizons,
but that is not a valid argument in my book.
For every story of a person who has changed or given up religion, there is another story of someone who's upbringing was extremely strict or orthodox and it continues to define them as an adult,
with our without their knowing consent.
* This particular point may be directed to a very small sub-section of the parent population but I'm going to make it anyways.
Some parents use religion as a crutch to assist them in raising their children. By this I mean that, God is the perfect, scary, all-powerful, metaphorical carrot & stick for your kids.
Teach your kids not to steal, because it is the wrong thing to do. Not because God is watching.
Teach your kids to help the poor because it is the right thing to do, not because it will help them get into Heaven.
I don't want to tell parents how to raise their kids but I am drawing from my own personal upbringing.
The gist of my argument is this: Religion is a beautiful thing **if** understood and practiced as it is meant to be. If not, it can turn ugly and cause misery to oneself and others.
Therefore, it should be introduced to children carefully and only once they are mature enough to grasp its meaning and purpose.