The Rasta movement defended smoking marijuana as they saw it promote clear-thinking. Thus, dreadlocks became associated with marijuana at some point. Many deadheads, mainly Caucasians, are pro-marijuana. Still, a few sects of Rastafarianism are against drug abuse. They view any mind-altering substance as “impure” with an emphasis on cleanliness. They also forbid red meat and drinking alcohol. Those purists hold that Bob Marley and his pro-marijuana attitude has harmed Rastafarianism’s reputation.
Bob, himself, was a Rastafarian. His dreadlocked style is what popularized the style in the mainstream. Shortly after, many other subcultures borrowed it. Dreadlocks spread across like wildfire, especially among:
Dreadlocks became integrated to many musical styles, such as Metal and Hip Hop.
Today, dread heads chose to wear their hair in dreads for a multitude of reasons. Some of them wear dreadlocks for spiritual reasons as described earlier. Some of them identify as Rastas. Some because they simply love the look!
Remember, having a reason for wearing dreadlocks is very important. So that one day when somebody asks you, “yes, but why you wear them?” You can give them a straight answer and explain what your dreads mean to you.