Letter: Unbelievers should be honest

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The Independent Online
ANNE WOODHAM'S article about what children should be told about Christmas quotes some questionable advice ('Those Almighty questions', Review, 19 December). Representatives of the Religious Education Council and the Institute of Family Therapy want children to be told that Christmas is 'a significant story for the world today' and that Jesus was 'a man who was prepared to give his life for what is right and good', and that 'it's important . . . that even non-believers treat the subject respectfully'.

Surely unbelievers, like believers, should tell their children what they really think - which may well be that the Christmas story is as ridiculous and irrelevant as most religious myths, that Jesus was as mistaken (and perhaps as mythical) as most religious teachers, and that religious beliefs should be treated with no more respect than other false beliefs, but that we should treat religious believers themselves with as much respect as we should wish them to treat us. Honesty is the best policy.

Jean Raison

London N19

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