The good news is that, if we have a body of quality people, these sorts of things are self-destructive and will only damage the reputations of those involved. And if we don’t? Then why care about what anyone thinks? Opinions based on ignorance are worthless and meaningless.
The only real takeaway from all this effort to evade discussion is that people really must have no answer at all. Their only hope is to make sure no question is asked.