I wonder if it's not best to ignore any statements about it supposedly being in decline (or what it's not suitable for or line noise yada yada yada), or at least not to repeat or link to them in places that casual users (like me) go to learn more about Perl. I recall once tuning into comp.lang.tcl, which is quite a nice group, though I never actually ended up using tcl (yet). What struck me, and a lot of what I remember now, was how often a subject along the lines of, "the outer world doesn't realize that tcl/tk is still alive and well," or "the outer world doesn't appreciate how much progess we've made" would recur. I had no picture of the tcl community before but now my picture was that they're riding some kind of lifeboat or whatever. Similar story when I check out comp.lang.lisp. I guess people feel a need to respond to cheap ideas in the wider world, maybe in some cathartic way, but the effect for me was to act as a repeater perpetuating the very ideas they fell in conflict with (and with this post it makes another hop -- doh!).
I liked the rest of your piece, though.