That may be, but this is specifically a fighter plane. A plane designed to dogfight.
Wrong, for two reasons. Firstly, the F-35 is designed as a multirole aircraft: the F-22 is a pure air superiority fighter, but the F-35 is supposed to be able to look after itself in the air and hit ground targets too.
The "look after itself in the air" would seem to agree with my assertion that one of the metrics for which it was designed was aerial combat. I did not say there were not others. The F-35C adds carrier landing and storage. If it is really bad at that you can't excuse it away with, "but it's a multirole aircraft, so it should be judged only as a FB, even if it splits apart on deck when it catches a hook." For one thing, single flight planes get *really* expensive.
Sure it's a multirole aircraft. In fact, each type has a different focus. But one of the roles it is currently intended to fill *is* aerial combat. But I disagree that it will necessarily be bad at it forever. These airframes can sometimes see a lot of changes over their lifespans. And if it is, it still will likely be useful. Look at the B-1B conventional munitions conversion: aircraft do shift roles as needed.