Perhaps I'm going out on a limb by starting a Tolkien forum here among the critical minds on the free web. But it's going to be a Tolkien forum with a difference, I hope.
I can only put it this way: Talk Tolkien
isn't a fan club. We're not devote. We enjoy Tolkien, but we don't worship him. All those topics that get you flamed off other Tolkien pages are considered legitimate here. For instance, that very old and obvious one: Was Tolkien a racist?
I really don't know and think the answer is probably very complex - but it isn't a taboo question and no opinions you may have on the issue are out of bounds.
I have enjoyed, nay loved LOTR and most other Tolkien books since I was 14. But Tolkien is quite unlike any other author I appreciate today - and I can see why others approach him from a greater distance. So I hope we can bear that in mind. No doubt most people who join this group will be 'loyalists' to some extent. But there will be others, and that's okay.