Reading fairy stories to children is harmful because it instils a false belief in the supernatural from a young age, the evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins has warned (and he’d know, he’s made a career out of telling fairy stories about how we are all biological machines controlled by a program encoded in our DNA).
Speaking at the Cheltenham Science Festival, Dawkins, a prominent atheist, said that it was pernicious to teach children about facts that were statistically improbable such as a frog turning into a prince.
He also claimed to have never believed in Santa Claus, knowing that the figure who turned up at his house at Christmas was his parents friend Sam.
Editor’s note: Most of us know by the time we reach puberty, through the simple process of gowing up, that fairt stories are not true. Some of us, by the time we reach adulthood, have worked out they are allegorical morality tales, others have just decided they are kid’s stuff. Obviously Prof. Dawkins had a very sheltered childhood and was so shocked to learn fairy stories are not true, he developed an irrational belief in the infallibility and omnipotence of science to cempensate for the trauma.