Heh, what a fun little scuffle taking place... Here's my
In terms of C/C++ (there's really not enough of a difference to get your panties all in a bunch about) it is an excellent language to start with if you want to be a programmer. Sure, its not as easy as some of the scripting languages like perl or ruby, but it will give a future programmer a more intimate knowlege of how coding works, primarily with object oriented design. Its not an easy language to pick up, especially when you get into the higher functionality of it, but it is beneficial and (I speak from experience) makes picking up other languages very easy.
Now, if you think about the idea of becoming a "programmer" and chuckle a little, maybe C isn't the best for you. You can easily get away with doing great web coding without even knowing C's "Hello World". While I don't claim to be a web coder at all, I have fiddled around with a few languages in that genre. I would check out Ruby on Rails, watching some screencasts
of its capabilities shows you just how powerful it is (I love the web blog in 15 minutes).
And all the "old" languages like COBOL and Fortran have their place and purpose, but unless you plan on devoting your career to them the only reason people learn them is to more easily understand their children languages.