It's very different if you get accused:
• By the child's parents.
• By friends, relatives, neighbors, workmates, whatever, from RL, without a child involved.
• By strangers in RL.
• By strangers online.
It's also different:
• If there are specific children involved.
• If there are none.
• If your life is socially mainstream: work and occupation, your family and friends relationships, and so on. Even if you're single past average ages.
• If your life is socially deviant.
Finally, but probably the single most important factor:
• If you have a criminal record on pedo crimes.
• If you have other criminal record.
• If you're facing a proper judicial case for one or the other.
• If your criminal record is clean.
Basically, the combination among all of those factors will tell you the best course of action. There are no universals.
I don't share your opinion on the best course of action, as that reinforces the discriminatory conditions we and children face. It is essentially a Vichy position without even the admission of being a pedo which Vichy people may use to humanize pedos as real existing, if broken, people.
It may still be the correct reaction in some cases, when any other reaction will get you in more trouble. It is just far from being always the best.
In a case like Newt's, and short of being accused of having engaged in forbidden acts, I see no need of being confrontational. To simply reply "I'm good with kids" seems enough to me. Generally I regard that as the most likely adequate response. If you are accused of specific forbidden acts then you have a good reason to be confrontational as you recommend. I would even go further and stop social contact with the people who accused you even if that means sacrificing LGFs.
However it is not the only option. On the other extreme, I have gone as far as admitting to like one or another girl and just making it clear that I know my limits; and with this not ending or even undermining my relationships with children or parents. Certainly, such a course of action is not for every pedo, every child and every third party adults. If you work with children and tell that to your employers or to people who can make you unemployed, then of course don't do it.
I've gotten into online debates about pedophilia at non pedo places.
More than once have I defended child marriage or the ability of minors to consent, including in reaction to reports of a minor engaging in evidently consensual sexual acts whether with another minor or adults.
Two RL acquaintances, including one I considered properly a friend, independently re shared anti pedo stupidities on their own pages. I blocked them both without further questions; as I do not need such people in my life. Then I went to the original posts and debated there. Did I change any mind? Maybe not. Nonetheless, at least I made clear that their discriminatory position is not unanimous. Without having to admit to being a pedo myself.
For my last Zucc ban (Sidenote: this is also why I'm not ok with the Trump ban, and conversely am ok if Myanmar bans Zucc from their country.) what happened was that a page re shared an interview with a Vichy pedo on their place. (Sidenote: since they posted the article in its entirety, and neither linked to the original nor credited it properly, it is a copyright violation. However, since for reporting copyright infringement you have to be the rights owner, I can't report it.) Since it was not credited I had to independently look for the original and found it relatively easily. After reading it, I easily pointed out the fallacies in both the original interview, the publishing page's commentary, and comments from followers on that post. Again without having to admit to being a pedo. It didn't matter much as it got me a ban. So what? Again, maybe I didn't change even one mind, but I made it clear that their position was not unanimous. And online I don't risk my security in the way I might in RL.
In any case all of the above factors interact in how you need to react. Particularly, my online bouts were with people who didn't know me; have no control over me; and didn't arise of being accused myself. All of those make it relatively safe.
I simply don't share your advice because over the long term it mainstreams and normalizes the Vichy position.