Since science requires strong critical thinking skills, it's a good thing.
Interesting conversations are one thing. Accepting what friends/colleagues say - simply because they are scientists - is another.
That's not what I am saying.
I am saying that scientific literacy has value in understanding any scientific argument. If I have a question about something in the bio-medical field, I will ask my friend who does bio-medical research.
The great thing about scientists is that they don't just give you an answer to accept (or not). They can give you the research, the mathematics involved and the logical argument. This is a very good thing, but it takes a bit of experience for it to be useful (since the language of science is mathematics, and if you don't have a strong background in mathematics you are going to have trouble understanding on a deep level).
But, all I am really saying is that scientific literacy is very valuable in understanding science.
The practical message is that we, as a society, would be a lot better off if the American public understood science better.