On The Philosophy of Moderation
The philosophy of all Stack Exchange sites (which they took from their precedent, Stack Overflow) was to help people by building a library of detailed and quality answers to all real questions. The idea was to reduce the clutter to a minimum by a set of rules and active moderation. Rules that didn't exist anywhere else on the web at the time, so an answer to your query had to be dug in stale forum pages, providing that there exists an answer and you're not going to be disappointed by seeing the post unresolved after ten minutes of reading and scrolling.
Turns out, for this vision to become reality, there had to be certain tweaks. Turns out, not all questions belong in the library. Not all questions are real either.
It's not your fault if your question is "When should I marry?" It's not the library's fault either, when its workers direct you out, because that question is out of the place. It's not something you look an answer for in the library.
Stack Overflow was envisioned to be mostly a very short chat between a professional and another about how to get one objective done. That's very different from teaching a beginner the ropes, discussing this new very nice tech that makes a programmer's job easy, or even noting down a few hundred lines of useful info, related to the job. Hence, there were newer measures taken, one of which was "closing questions".
What Closure Really Is
The idea was that your question was "put away" so the real problem your fellow professional has can be seen, or in most cases solved.
It's helpful to liken SE to a library, as opposed to other walk-in-the-park answer sites like Yahoo Answers, and to some extent, Quora. If you make loud noises, you'll be asked to leave the library. If you start dancing frantically and tearing down books, you'll have to leave the library. Generally, doing anything stupid and unruly will get you kicked out of the library. That's not because the workers are trigger-happy snobs. It's because that's the only way to keep the library quiet, so that it serves its purpose.
However, workers in the library don't hold grudges. Once the naughtiness goes away, once everything is according to the rules, and once the behavior is improved, the same person is more than welcome to use the place. That's exactly the case about closure. Improve the post, and the post will be placed in a queue for review. I have closed many questions that I have reopened later. Just like how five users with 3,000 reputation on this site can close questions, five users can vote to reopen them.
The I-HATE-MODERATION Camp
Doesn't matter how noble your intention is. Once people know about you, there will always be some misunderstanding. Moderating a large community is so exception. Do you think you're the only person who's come to a meta site and left a non-constructive rant? Then you're wrong.
As soon as moderation started, people started posting emotional "questions" on metas. They took downvotes to mean what they don't mean. They took closure and deletion as censorship. Sometimes they just needed a reason to whine. Well, when you don't like someone, whatever they do or say must be because they want to hurt you in some way.
This makes me feel I need to repeat myself. Any act of moderation is only done to maintain a clean site. This site wouldn't have attracted you, a PhD, if it weren't for how easy it is to find correct and reliable answers to questions. We owe much of that to people that devoted their (free-)time to moderating this, even though it's a pretty thankless task. (This is what they get as a "thank you".)
Feed Me Moar Answers
This long-winded response would surely benefit from some defense on the homework-closing side. I mentioned earlier that SO (and as a result, SE) was meant for "real" questions. So, what are "real" questions?
A real question, in my humble opinion, is one that the cornered mind of the asker has asked. If an apple fell on my head, and I questioned its motion, that's not a real question. It's something I blurted out due to sheer curiosity. My mind was not cornered — it would reach out stars and idiotic explanations unless I get some reading done. Then, if I did my job as an asker, and I still didn't get the response, I have nothing left to do. This becomes my real question.
Similarly, some questions are textbooks', not mine. It's not a real question if it's not me asking it. I'm just babbling some scientific jargon, like a parrot. If you're okay with spoon-feeding parrots the answers to their textbooks' problems, then this site might not to be the place for you.
On another note, textbook questions with no effort are bad because they spread like a sickness. If we stop closing questions for a week, you'd drown in a mass of questions from people that ask you to count significant figures for them.
What You Could've Done Instead
I see you've pretty much figured out that this place is for discussing the issues in the site. Just another expression of bureaucracy from the developers' side. If I were you, I would've come here and asked for a reason those questions are closed.
Maybe I'm missing something. Maybe, and I say maybe, a PhD in chemistry doesn't mean I can tell people that have governed a site for at least a couple of years how to do their job. Maybe there's a fault in the system, and I get the rewarding feeling of helping out others do their job by pointing it out and getting it solved. Maybe if I wrote a polite and constructive post, this guy called TIPS would've commented on how much more the lines have gotten fuzzier and how we're trying to work on it. Maybe he even asked me for any suggestions.
OwwK, I wrote this during a dark night, and now that I re-read it, I realize it was a bit harsher than intended. I scraped the parts that seemed the harshest, and please point out anything that needs editing in the comments. Sorry that I overreacted a bit. It was a jerkish thing to do.