This is very true. I am as cordially received at non-Catholic schools of theology as my non-Catholic colleagues are received where I have taught. We all see each other as peers in the theological community just as, among those who are academics of philosophy, there is a respect for those of all the different schools of philosophy…from ancient to contemporary.
My time on this forum has greatly diminished my thought about apologists. They need to become degreed theologians; it would cure the bulk of their shortcomings.
I do think theologians are very good at assessing the theologians of the past. One of the most pointed passages in From Conflict to Communion, which charts the course for both confessions for the next decade, sums it up well
Sixteenth-century divisions were rooted in different understandings of the truth of the Christian faith and were particularly contentious since salvation was seen to be at stake. On both sides, persons held theological convictions that they could not abandon. One must not blame someone for following his or her conscience when it is formed by the Word of God and has reached its judgments after serious deliberation with others.
How theologians presented their theological convictions in the battle for public opinion is quite another matter. In the sixteenth century, Catholics and Lutherans frequently not only misunderstood but also exaggerated and caricatured their opponents in order to make them look ridiculous. They repeatedly violated the eighth commandment, which prohibits bearing false witness against one’s neighbor. Even if the opponents were sometimes intellectually fair to one another, their willingness to hear the other and to take his concerns seriously was insufficient. The controversialists wanted to refute and overcome their opponents, often deliberately exacerbating conflicts rather than seeking solutions by looking for what they held in common. Prejudices and misunderstandings played a great role in the characterization of the other side. Oppositions were constructed and handed down to the next generation. Here both sides have every reason to regret and lament the way in which they conducted their debates. Both Lutherans and Catholics bear the guilt that needs to be openly confessed in the remembrance of the events of 500 years ago.