I agree with everything in your first paragraph. The inconsistencies didn't start with Abrams and they've always diminished my enjoyment of the franchise.
I'll be honest with you, I use to think exactly the way you did about inconsistencies in the narrative. Around the time the first Abrams film came out I was so wound up that I make some of the posters on here look downright sane.
The first time I watched the Abrams film I was furious. How dare he do what he did to Star Trek. Also around that time I was found that I simply wasn't having fun watching anymore. Watching consisted of me looking for gotcha moments that I could bitch and moan about. Canon was all consuming.
Then I did something I should've done years prior...
I went back and started watching the various series with a more critical eye and found they were guilty of the same exact offenses that Abrams film was. I also found something else, Star Trek was incredibly fun to watch again. Something it hadn't been for a very, very long time.
Canon and continuity were a weight that I had been carrying around that was preventing me from enjoying something I loved very, very much.