According to my mom (who is also afraid of them): "Snakes are demons of the devil. Do Ты ever see any good pictures of snakes? No. Do Ты ever see any pictures of hell that don't have snakes? No. They came from the depths of hell to terrorize the planet. They're disgusting, slithering creatures that do nothing but harm us. And that, honey, is why I don't want Ты touching the snakes in the backyard. They're icky-poo."