Those who progress at an 'average pace' as how you put it, are not stupid and are not unaware of the limitations of the Hunter class. Yes, they're obviously going to be less hardcore and elite but it doesn't mean they don't know where their class stands and is supposed to perform when competing against other DPS of similar gear and skill. Sure, their expectations would probably be not as extreme as some of the top raiding hunters, and perhaps they don't want to go down the rerolling route either but I've definitely noticed the same concerns in regards to the class from some of my friends.
I know plenty of old school Hunters on my big realm that I've met since vanilla that still play, and whilst not all of them are 13/13hc, it doesn't mean I'm going to automatically look down on them - why should I? Every now and then, I like to have random talks with them, and the topic of Hunter DPS is usually discussed. It's something they're not too happy with either, not surprisingly. Most of them feel that the class could use some help too.
Just because you're a casual raider, or someone who is only 10/13hc doesn't mean they can't feel somewhat lacking in X and Y departments etc by the class. It still shows and things like the lack of utility can also annoy these players.