Commentary: Rowan Marley Wades Into Bunny Wailer-Snoop Lion Controversy

Rohan Marley and Snoop Lion

Rohan Marley and Snoop Lion 

Rohan Marley, the son of Bob Marley has waded into the Bunny Wailer/Rastafari Millennium Council versus Snoop Lion controversy on the side of Snoop Lion.

According to website TMZ, Rohan tells TMZ that Bob Marley "would've totally supported Snoop's Rastafarian rebirth," thereby giving Snoop the Bob Marley family seal of approval.

Rohan told TMZ, "We have been cool with Snoop before his transformation and he will continue to have our blessings and support."

According to the TMZ website,

Rohan says he's well aware that an original member of the Wailers  (Bunny Wailer) -- along with the Rastafari Millennium Council -- attacked Snoop ... claiming the rapper is nothing more than a Rasta Imposta.

"Our father's name should not even be mentioned in this issue because like a true Rasta, he would have embraced Snoop's reincarnation and welcomed the positivity."

Rohan continued: "Why condemn a man for his love of Rastafari and Bob Marley?"

The controversy between Bunny Wailer/Rastafari Millennium Council and Snoop Lion stems from Snoop Dogg’s name change to Snoop Lion and his claim that he converted to the Rastafarian faith during his visit to Jamaica last year. At that time Snoop seemed to have gotten the blessings of Bunny Wailer and other elders of the faith.

Bunny Wailer
Bunny Wailer

But now, according to TMZ:

Bunny Wailer claims Snoop has engaged in "outright fraudulent use of Rastafari Community's personalities and symbolism" -- and has failed to meet "contractual, moral and verbal commitments."

And it's not just Bunny...something called the Ethio-Africa Diaspora Union Millennium Council (aka Rastafari Millennium Council) -- fired off a 7-page demand letter to Snoop.

The Rastafari Millennium Council claim to have made it clear to Snoop that "smoking weed and loving Bob Marley and reggae music is not what defines the Rastafari Indigenous Culture! [and]  ... they want Snoop to stop using the name "Lion" ... pay up the "financial and moral support" they claim he committed, and issue a public apology.

"...If Snoop refuses -- FIRE WILL BUN FI HIM!!"

We don't know what the "contractual, moral and verbal commitments" between Snoop Lion and Bunny Wailer and the Millennium Council are. Although Snoop seems to acknowledge a verbal agreement here. Neither can we verify the veracity of Snoop Lion's beliefs.

If Snoop has a contractual obligation with Bunny Wailer and the Rastafari Millennium Council, then Bunny Wailer and the Rastafari Millennium Council have all right to sue him.

But it seems rather extreme for Bunny Wailer and the Rastafari Millennium Council to question Snoops beliefs and to accuse him of fraudulent use of Rastafari symbolism when in realty "the Rastafarian community" is a community that is loosely held together with people who have different levels of adherence to the faith. And, all manner of people seem to be "fraudulently" using Rastafari symbolism. Moreover, entering into any faith is a journey towards embracing the full tenets of that faith.

Furthermore, Snoop Lion has made a dramatic stance, from which it would be difficult to retreat, given the importance of credibility in his community . There is no doubt that Snoop's "reincarnation" has shed light on Rastafari for many people. And that can't be a bad thing.

For his part Snoop has done the wise thing by offering contrition to Bunny Wailer and the elders here. We now hope the two sides can resolve their differences and Snoop Lion will continue to grow and ground with his Rastafarian brethren and continue to make good music.