The canal (or other places) is just a manifestation of what's wrong with fishing today. If the canal wasn't there it would be some other spot. There are just too many asshats fishing.
At this point, it's~30 years since I started my solo fishing career. 30 years ago I was friends (somewhat at the time) with the sharpies at the spot I fished. I knew my place in the world and generally kept my distance from them unless I was asked to join them. One night that I was asked, I got a decent fish, low 20's. Certainly nothing special to them but to me it was a PB at the time. I kept the fish, left the jetty that night. I cleaned it at home and dumped the rack the next day at the inlet (the fish was caught off the jetty the prior night). The ass reaming that I received for dumping the rack was fairly epic. To put it mildly, their point was very well made. You say nothing, you speak nothing and you sure as hell don't dump your racks where you caught your fish. I learned a lesson, first out of fear and second that I had lost the trust of the regulars.
That's what's missing today - people that understand, people that actually give a crap about something other than their FB posts. For all of the complaining, suggestions, etc in this thread the only thing that fixes this issue is another crash. Once the low hanging fruit is picked clean (easily catching 30lb fish on what amounts to fishing in a river, during the middle of the day in the middle of the summer) we will no longer have this problem. The asshats will leave once the easy fishing dries up, they always have. It used to be montauk. There are other places that have come and gone too. Once the stock drops a little more the canal will dry up. Then the asshats will have no place left to go.