I was watching an episode of the The Big Questions which dealt with the question is "religion good for children?", see the videos below if you are interested. It amazes me that the religious folks out there think religion is good for children. Granted in the show the theists were for the most part liberal and more open to different ideas than the crazy fundamentalists we know and berate. Sidenote: the liberal Christian issue reminds me of a good post by Neil at godlessindixieland which deals with his positive experience as a christian.
Back to the issue, my opinion is that religion is not good for children for the same reason that I think teaching pseudo science is bad for children. Why would you want to lie and teach a child something wrong? There are no facts available that show god is real, and so why are we teaching children this rubbish. An analogy is parents that tell children Santa Claus is real, but there is a few major difference. After a certain age the parents say, "hey Santa is not real." Additionally, the Santa issue is dealt with once a year and not every single day. Also Santa doe not teach warped morals while God has a very good ability to do that. Everyone is always trying to teach children what is right and wrong, so why should we be filling their minds with lies.....is that not wrong?
More importantly, world wide it seems that mental disorders are on the rise (I think this has to do with better psychology and psychiatry practices), so why would we want to be filling fragile minds with things that can are a burden to rational thought? Cognitive Dissonance is a simple thing that in a very active mind could lead to a serious amount of stress which could lead to a breakdown in the persons emotional stability. Cognitive dissonance I realize is not something that most people would think could lead to a emotional breakdown, but don't you think it could when your eternal life lies in the balance! Religion teaches about an eternal torment of pain which is false, but if it is ingrained then it can still be a burden as the brain is not always rational. If the brain was rational all the time, there would be no divorce, as people would not get married and cheat on one another.
The videos, ironically from IslamHDTube