I don’t blame Amex.
Think about that for a moment. Amex’s business model rewards you with points/miles for using their respective products. With this promotion, you essentially get those miles back for free. Anyone stupid enough to do this deserves to be taken advantage of by Amex.
Aside: The most profitable part of the American Airlines product is their loyalty program. More than you want. I personally am spending a month abroad in Europe, and I’m doing it 100% in points and miles. Nothing out of pocket for hotels or flights. (and only business or first flight) The cost of this out of pocket, right off the top of my head is at least 30k. Probably more. Companies don’t want you to use your miles and points in a smart way. Wasting them on nonsense, giving them to charity, or encouraging you to use them when you shouldn’t be a benefit to them.
tldr: Let the morons waste their points on stupid shit, while you sit on the beach in Nice, France for a month on Amex pennies.