“I would have to admit that I might treat a defender of infanticide who avoids the ad hominem better than a Calvinist who shifts from talking about my positions to talking about me.”
This strikes me as fairly common attitude, both inside and outside the church. It doesn’t matter what you do, as long as you’re courteous. And what you do should never reflect on who you are.
I expect that’s one reason George Tiller was a member in good standard of a mainline church. And that’s also why Peter Singer has been so successful in promoting abortion, infanticide, and euthanasia.
Once we reduce ethics to etiquette, then as long as the prison guard who shoves a Jewish kid into the oven is polite to the inmates, that’s the main thing. There’s no cause to speak ill of the guard or question his character.
As long as you use a gentle tone of voice while you insert the needle into the skull of the late-term baby, then what more can we ask of you?
At the same time, I can’t help noticing that those who tout universal love are consistently intolerant of opponents they don't like. They wax eloquent about loving everyone, but they only love the lovable. They only love their own kind.