You provided an interesting perspective in this article.
I have mixed thoughts about citations. They can be good or bad depending on the type of content and the audience.
Wearing my scientific hat, I value the importance of citations for articles with scientific content. However, I am hesitant to clutter my generic articles with too much citations, as they can bore or confuse the readers.
In terms of curation, some of my articles with no citations were curated so it does not seem to be the requisite criteria. However, it is important that the way we present the ideas and arguments need to be credible, convincing, and believable.
You also mentioned the scarcity of curators. It may be the case as some of my articles were curated after two weeks of publishing. There may be a huge list to review the submitted articles applying stringent criteria that Medium has. I have strong empathy and don’t envy the curators’ job here.