Actually, I believe that strict curve grading is both immoral/unethical and a misuse of statistics. It is immoral since the grade a student gets isn't dependent on only their own efforts but the efforts of others and in some ways just the current composition of a class, which is partly determined by sheer luck.
It is a misuse of statistics, since a distribution, such as a normal distribution, is intended as a derived or emergent property of the characteristics of large population. But when use in strict curve grading, it is imposing a distribution on a small population for which you have little or no evidence of its appropriateness. See the answer of Bob Brown for a further discussion of distributions that are likely, but not guaranteed to occur. Suppose your Physics class is composed of 30 Einstein clones, for example.
Strict Absolute Grading is also immoral/unethical (but perhaps less so) because it doesn't admit the fact that students are humans and humans make mistakes. Some of those mistakes are inconsequential, but absolute grading can make them very consequential. Also, in most uses, it doesn't reflect the fact that humans can learn from their mistakes. So, it turns the classroom into a grading scheme as opposed to a learning environment. The other problem with absolute grading, though not an ethical one, is the constant whining of students who have "just missed" the next mark. You would like to have a system in which that isn't necessary.
The other question that arises is what the grades are based on. I find that over reliance on exams, especially high risk exams is also counterproductive educationally. Among other things, they can force the students into harmful practices such as cramming. It is difficult, though not impossible, to create an exam for which cramming is completely ineffective, but such things can also be very difficult to evaluate. If an exam only evaluates objective facts, it has, in my view, little educational value and can be actively destructive.
I prefer, then, to base grading on projects and writings rather than exams and tend to favor group work, though that is an artifact of my field. I also try, as much as possible to think of myself as a teacher, not an evaluator. The educational process should dominate the whole system with evaluation being useful to learning, not just to classification into grade buckets.
One way to do this is to permit (and encourage) re-work by students after grading and feedback is given. The underlying scoring rubric is like that of absolute grading, but the first evaluation isn't necessarily the final one. I've even asked students to resubmit work after I've discussed proper solutions with the class. A re-submission can earn additional points/marks, but not up to full marks, so as to discourage too much dependence on re-work. There is no whining when students just fall a bit short. They can make corrections. Even correcting and resubmitting inconsequential mistakes is an advantage as it reinforces the learning in their minds.
This resubmission system need not be overly burdensome on the grader if students turn in the old work (along with the grader comments made there) along with the new, and marking (highlighting) the changes. A glance at the package can be enough to reassign grades for the new work.
Note that what happens when you do this is that you spend more time and effort with those students who most depend on your teaching, rather than those who nearly always turn in essentially perfect work.