Okay, apologies to the hippies or former hippies.
I am 24 year old and was probably coloring my perception about drug-users through what I see here in India. Unlike in the west, here drugs are often only associated with anti-social elements of society, thugs, criminals and prostitutes. Although nowadays many rich kids of the prominent localities in various metropolitan cities are also known to be regular users of various kinds of drugs (just yesterday watched in news report how cobra's poison was being used as a drug in various parties in Mumbai). So basically, drug users are often associated with being "irreligious".
In the whole East in general, IMO, the people who often get attracted to religion, especially Buddhism, are often already "good citizens"(sorry again for associated "hippyism" as something bad) with good character. I know a case, through my friend, about how a former dacoit in one of the rural towns of Rajasthan is now a senior Vippassana teacher and organizer (and a respected teacher). But such cases are often rare.
It was because of this conditioning of my mind, that I was led to conclude that in the west, on the contrary, it is the "hippy" (who I associated with anti-social elements who are not really serious in life) who is more attracted to Buddhism (or any Eastern religion for that matter).
I guess taking drugs and psychedelics is pretty common in the west and almost every individual passes through a phase of life (usually college or high school) where he or she experiments with it; and criminals alone are not guilty of taking drugs there, I guess.
What I did not like is that the hippies take up Buddhism due to their drug experiences, and also go on to preach about how drugs could be beneficial for Buddhists. This is completely wrong.
PS- I know there are lot of Hindu Sadhus (Nagas) who smoke Hashish all day, but they are not really "respected" too much in India anyway; and are often only short of being considered criminals.