Trust level 2 has the ability to post links as well, doesn’t it? But to a limited number of sites.
I guess just expanding the list of trusted sites would do the trick.
I agree with the OP that keeping someone from posting any links for a super minor infraction, like quoting someone else swearing and then bleeping it, is pretty ridiculous. OTOH, if the infraction is posting a link to pirated software or a virus, then it’s entirely appropriate.