I consider rec boats analogous to commuter bikes, the single or few speed two-wheelers that are fine for paved Rail to Trails and city streets, but not something that would be the best functional or safety choice for long distance touring, highway use or on off road trails.
As long as their limitations are understood (which both the OP and previous poster clearly do) there is nothing wrong with rec boats. I don't look askance them UNLESS I see people using them in inappropriate environments or water temps or operating them without basic safety gear like float bags and PFD.
I also am not inclined to want to go on a group tour with people paddling them because it slows down the pace. But for the average sunny day pond or gentle stream float, I'm happy to share the waterways with the rec kayak owners and more power to them.
Canoe Pack Liner
Hardshell Kayak Sail Rigs
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