Sorry to disagree, but, amps can work just fine if you use high quality units and engineer your system properly.
Agreed. If you use an SR5 or SR2, you're using an amplifier.
Some years ago, in another life, I did engineering for AM and FM radio stations. Typically we'd use a device called an "exciter" to create a signal large enough, say 10w, to drive maybe a 250w intermediate power stage, this driving perhaps a 10kw final output amplifier. Bear in mind, the exciter had at least two amplification stages inside it. The noise figures out of the end of this long chain of amplifiers was excellent.
It's foolish to say "amplifiers are bad" without exception.
Antennas are a inexpensive, elegant and often effective way of improving the performance of an RF system. That being said, amplifiers are part of life in RF systems and to entirely eschew them is to ignore the reality of asymmetric systems such as PTMP where high gain endpoints are talking to omni directional distribution nodes, such as FM broadcast and data networks.