Christopher Hitchens on Science and Reason
There is…no special reason to credit “science” as the father or godfather of reason. As in the case of the doctors mentioned earlier [ed. note: e.g., Nazi physicians, etc.], a commitment to experiment and find evidence is no guarantee of immunity to superstition and worse. Sir Isaac Newton was prey to the most idiotic opinions about alchemy. Joseph Priestly, the courageous Unitarian and skeptic who discovered oxygen, was a believer in the phlogiston theory. Alfred Russel Wallace, one of Darwin’s greatest collaborators and progenitors, was a dedicated attender of spiritualist sessions where “ectoplasm” was produced by frauds to the applause of morons. Even today, there are important men of science—admittedly a minority—who maintain that their findings are compatible with belief in a creator. They may not be able to derive the one from the other, or even to claim to do so, but they testify the the extreme stubbornness with which intelligent people will cling to unsupported opinions.
This one kind of goes off the rails a bit toward the end, the paragraph concluding with a point that is tangential to the one with which he began. But one gets the point (or, points, as it were…).