Throughout history, dreadlocks have been significant to cultures around the globe. The matted and locked hairstyle was a way for people to prevent or slow positive energies from leaving the body. More recently, dreads have been an important aspect of Rastafarians and African-American culture in the United States. Yet, when white people try dreadlocks, there is often backlash and accusations of cultural appropriation. Should anyone be allowed to have dreads? Is it cultural appropriation for white people to have dreadlocks?
Yes, white people should be able to have dreadlocks
People should be able to express themselves how they want.
White people should be able to have dreads because cultures should be shared
The values and material works that come from a specific culture should be accessible to everyone. Material culture—such as artwork, clothing, and even dreadlocks—does not belong only to the originating culture. Culture belongs to any human who acknowledges and appreciates the meaning attached to a cultural symbol.
White people should be able to have dreadlocks for spiritual reasons
Dreadlocks have many ties to spirituality. A variety of cultures have religious practices surrounding hair, such as Amish people and Hasidic Jewish people. Dreadlocks are just another manifestation of altering one's hair for religious purposes. Anyone who holds those spiritual beliefs surrounding dreadlocks ought to be able to wear them.