One of the great boons of scanning, processing, and printing is the ability to correct contrast and color very easily. Scanning thousands of prints and source negatives from my father and grandfather, both published and professional photographers was very enlightening in this matter. With a few second's work, I could attain a full brightness range. Awesome.
And it's not like optical printing doesn't have it's own issues like lens aberrations, etc.
I would think the skills of the operator in either system is more important that which system one uses. But each to their own.