I went with my gf to a few photo exhibitions on the weekend for the SALA Festival.
All she kept asking me was 'what's wrong with those photos? all the colours are weird.'
So I had to explain to her the whole 'idea' behind HDR, in capturing more range of light than the camera can handle in one shot.
Funnily enough, we went to the next exhibit, and she really liked the shots, mostly dark grey cloudy landscape scenes. i could tell that they were HDR too, but she had no idea, they just had that 'i like it' factor to the untrained eye. And isn't that what counts? If it makes the shot look good to the layman's eye, then use whatever tool you want to get the job done.
There just happens to be a lot of examples of 'bad' HDR around. but what i call 'bad HDR' (mainly with the fake-looking colours) someone else might really like. It's only a relatively recently-popular thing, give it a few years for people to calm down and figure out how to use it properly, then the proportion of 'good' HDR will increase.
K-amps is right, it's a tool. I'd reckon it more with an angle-grinder or a circular saw. You can build a house both with and without a circular saw. In the right hands, you can make a nice house. In the wrong hands, you're left with a useless pile of rubble where a house should be. There's nothing to stop you using whatever tools you come across, but they only make good work when they're used by the right hands...