I honestly think Star Trek really hurt Sci Fi on Tv as a whole. The writing for that show has never been all that great...even in the original series.
I respectufully dissagree.
I think just the opposite to a certain extent. When Gene was alive, Star Trek was alway challenging and trying to push the envelope. Sure there were a bunch of stinkers in TOS and TNG, but there were episodes so utterly amazing that they have changed the way I think about life. Once Rodenberry past away, the show went down hill becasue it refused to take risks and the show runners began to have internal conflicts which resulted in all the good ones leaving (i.e Moore and Piller.)
The demise of Star Trek was purely political, the wrong people in charge making the wrong decisions and hiring people based on compatability rather than talent (basically they hired a lot of Rick MacCallums.) Star Trek could still be going strong if Paramount had not left Berman with so much power.