I do mostly see it as a trend, as the 80's it was cool to have curly hair.
However, I do think curly hair is seen as exotic and out of the usual...some people like that and some people don't like that.
With that said, black people, as portrayed by the media, are also seen as exotic and out of the usual. Whether for good or bad, they are still seen as "the other."
It might be a correlation, rather than a cause-and-effect. In other words, media portrays trends and what is "usual" or "normal" (that definition changes of course); therefore, curly white gals and black gals (both curly and straight) might be seen as "exotic" or "the other."
People who deal with fashions, trends, and what's "in," are going to be snobby towards those of us that don't fit into their mold.
That's right, I said it! I wear scrunchies!!
I am a sulfate washing, cone slabbing, curly lovin' s.o.b. The CG police haven't caught me yet.