The SMS messages stuff is so we can run analysis on number of SMS's you send and receive to display to you. We don't read any of your SMS's, we just count them. Unfortunately Android permissions don't let us differentiate the two. You can just not allow that permission though and the app will still work.
You can absolutely cherry pick permissions (and everyone should). You just can't do it during installation and without a 3rd party helper app. Please look into rooting your device and installing LBE Privacy Guard.