A political movement attempted to subvert the teaching of evolutionary science by miming the forms of science, and calling themsleves, first "Creation Science" and then "Intelligent Design", in order to smuggle religious teachings into science textbooks.
In response to this attack, science organizations denounced both Creationism and ID as pseudoscience, and rallied their communities to resist this effort to propagandize students: https://www.nature.com/articles/nmeth1207-983; https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1451210/. The primary battleground of both the religious campaign, and the scientific pushback was explicitly in education ABOUT science, not the conduct of science.
However, the arguments that ID was not appropriately taught as science included the point that ID theory had not been published in peer reviewed science journals. This is not itself a relevant point -- all sorts of ideas are proposed in peer reviewed journals that are debunked in other peer reviewed journals, and should never be in a high school science class. Nevertheless, this was a POLITICALLY useful point used in the defense of science. Additionally, assertions were made that design hypotheses -- teleology -- are not appropriate subjects for science. This despite teleology being CENTRAL to both anthropology and the SETI program.
The political importance of the first point above, no peer reviewed journal articles, became an issue when a science journal actually DID publish a peer reviewed article. The journal editor was immediately fired, the publishing organization declared the article should not have been published (NOT because it was an ID article, but -- supposedly - because its subject was outside the Journal's normal content -- this despite most journals being fairly flexible on content. Additionally, the editor was subject to a widely publicized smear campaign (see http://www.talkreason.org/articles/martyr.cfm for an example). Note, academic institutions grant far more biology PhDs than there are paid positions, and like most post-Docs, this editor was struggling to boost his resume to find long-term employment (he was doing the editing for free, and was unpaid in his Smithsonian fellowship, and only given a stipend at his NIH fellowship). the not unexpected outcome of being fired as editor, and smeared over his other positions, is that the offending editor became unemployable in serious science. This lesson, if it was intended as such, was highly effective in dissuading other editors from making the same mistake, and no other ID paper has been published since in science journals.
The negatives from the atmosphere of the defensive political response by science to an anti-science attack is the subject of this question.
Consider the alien source of life hypothesis or ASL:
Life evolved on another planet and developed an intelligent space-faring race. This race travelled around the galaxy seeding life on various planets, including Earth. Suppose that the aliens have visited Earth every few million years and added new organisms, and that all diversity above the level of genera was created by this alien species. That is, evolution has led to the diversity of genera and species, but that to some degree, some of the levels above that may have been created by the alien race.
Postulate that the ASL might be true. This is an examinable hypothesis. One can look for evidence for or against it in the following three areas:
Evidence based on genetics and chemistry that diversification above the level of genus or some higher level may require so many simultaneous mutations that it is astronomically unlikely to have occurred even once in the history of life.
Evidence in the fossil record whether many higher level categories arise spontaneously, without precursors, and whether it is common for many of these new categories to arise at about the same time.
Engineering analysis of organisms and genetics that may indicate whether or not life was assembled from a toolkit with certain standard tools, materials, and techniques, or instead evolved lineally.
Would today's atmosphere of defensive resistance towards design make it impossible for science to consider evidence for or against in the areas of 1, 2, and 3, and therefore make it impossible for science to ever discover the truth of ASL?
The career ending example of the sole editor who tried to publish such topics suggests that publications in science journals might not be viable today. Under such conditions, how can the evidence ever be seriously evaluated? And does the impossibility of having a serious discussion about these issues represent a failure of science?
The Wikipedia article on the journal editor, which while it is not fully balanced, does provide an in depth summary of the case: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sternberg_peer_review_controversy
Related considerations: teleological framing reportedly seems ineliminable from biology in general. As Kant argues:
The highest formal unity, which is based upon ideas alone, is the unity of all things—a unity in accordance with an aim or purpose; and the speculative interest of reason renders it necessary to regard all order in the world as if it originated from the intention and design of a supreme reason. This principle unfolds to the view of reason in the sphere of experience new and enlarged prospects, and invites it to connect the phenomena of the world according to teleological laws, and in this way to attain to the highest possible degree of systematic unity. The hypothesis of a supreme intelligence, as the sole cause of the universe—an intelligence which has for us no more than an ideal existence—is accordingly always of the greatest service to reason. Thus, if we presuppose, in relation to the figure of the earth (which is round, but somewhat flattened at the poles), or that of mountains or seas, wise designs on the part of an author of the universe, we cannot fail to make, by the light of this supposition, a great number of interesting discoveries [emphasis added]. If we keep to this hypothesis, as a principle which is purely regulative, even error cannot be very detrimental. For, in this case, error can have no more serious consequences than that, where we expected to discover a teleological connection (nexus finalis), only a mechanical or physical connection appears. In such a case, we merely fail to find the additional form of unity we expected, but we do not lose the rational unity which the mind requires in its procedure in experience. But even a miscarriage of this sort cannot affect the law in its general and teleological relations. For although we may convict an anatomist of an error, when he connects the limb of some animal with a certain purpose, it is quite impossible to prove in a single case that any arrangement of nature, be it what it may, is entirely without aim or design.
With respect to the issue of anti-creationist bias: although the SEP article on creationism itself is openly hostile to intelligent-design theory (calling it scientifically worthless, philosophically confused, and theologically "blinkered beyond repair"), a generally related SEP article on fine-tuning questions in cosmology is more sympathetic (or at least nonconfrontational). Moreover, the article on teleological arguments for the existence of God says:
We will not pursue that dispute here except to note that even if the case is made that ID could not count as proper science, which is controversial, that would not in itself demonstrate a defect in design arguments as such. Science need not be seen as exhausting the space of legitimate conclusions from empirical data. In any case, the floods of vitriol flowing from both sides in the current ID discussion suggest that much more than the propriety of selected inferences from particular empirical evidences is at issue.
I'll point to the three downvotes on this question in about an hour as evidence of the extraordinary hostility expressed towards anything that might in any way lend any oblique support for creationism. Even a discussion about whether this reflexive anti-creationism might have harmful side effects on science is met with hostility.