things that matter

One Of The Police Officers Killed In Dallas Was An Iraq War Veteran And Latino

What started as a peaceful protest against police brutality in downtown Dallas, Texas, on July 7 turned into a scene of nightmarish violence. In total, five police officers were murdered by a sniper, with seven others injured. Among those killed was 32-year-old Patrick Zamarripa, a father and Iraq War veteran. There has been an overwhelming outpour of grief over Zamarripa’s death, from family, friends and even celebrities.

Patrick Zamarripa’s family was confused, scared and shaken as the gunfire broke out at the downtown Dallas rally.

During a protest against police brutality, gun shots rang out. It wasn’t long until people realized there was a sniper on a roof targeting the police officers at the rally.

It was his father, Rick Zamarripa, who first confirmed on social media that his son had died in the gun fire.

Most of you already know this by now today in Dallas , my son is a police officer in Dallas he was working there the…

Posted by Rick Zamarripa on Friday, July 8, 2016

When news broke of Zamarripa’s death, friends, families and celebs took to social media to express their grief.

Cousins, siblings and his parents were devastated to hear that the Navy veteran was killed.

It is so heartbreaking.

Zamarripa had survived three tours of duty in Iraq before returning to Dallas and joining the Dallas Police Department to protect the freedoms he fought for overseas.

Texas Ranger Joey Gallo was in disbelief over the death of Zamarripa.

A couple months ago @nomazara26 and I were walking down the street in downtown Dallas. When an officer stopped us, Mazara and I immediately became nervous, "I know who you guys are" he said. "Joey Gallo and Nomar Mazara, can I get a picture with you guys please?" It was definitely a first for me and Nomar to have an officer, a true hero, want to meet us. His name is Patrick Zamarripa, one of the officers killed in last nights shootings in Dallas. I'll never forget how kind and down to Earth he was. We ended up having a 15 minute conversation about sports with him. He was an avid Rangers fan. But more importantly a great person, and family man. Please keep Patrick, and all the officers affected and their families in our prayers today. #prayfordallas

A photo posted by Joey Gallo (@joeygallo24) on

Gallo remembered a time when he and teammate Nomar Mazara were stopped by Zamarripa while walking around. Instead of being in trouble, Zamarripa was just approaching them as a fan asking for a photo and some small chitchat.

“I just couldn’t believe it, when I found out that he was one of the officers that had been killed” Mazara told ESPN. “I was glad I had a chance to take that picture, especially because he was a police officer. He’s a hero.”

Cuba Gooding Jr. had also met Zamarripa while in Dallas and was deeply impacted by his tragic death.

“I cried today when I heard that,” Gooding Jr. told TMZ. “I cried. That’s all I’ll say.”

There have already been memorials for the officers lost on July 7. Zamarripa’s mother was there.

“He was so proud and loved being a father to her,” Valerie Zamarripa, told 20/20. “She [his 2-year-old daughter] looks just like him. I just don’t know how she’s going to be looking for him and not see him anymore.”

Family, friends and strangers are coming together to raise money to help Zamarripa’s family.

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READ: Listen To Jennifer Lopez, Prince Royce And Selena Gomez Pay Tribute To Victims Of Orlando Shooting

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10 Awkward Questions Black Latinos Are Asked Way Too Often


10 Awkward Questions Black Latinos Are Asked Way Too Often

Credit: @90s.wavee / Instagram

It’s 2016, people! And yet there are still plenty of folks who openly express shock about black Latinos’ racial, ethnic and cultural identities. Let’s face it, people can make some ignorant comments, and many still don’t seem to understand that being Latino has nothing to do with skin color. To that end, here are some things black Latinos are sick and tired of hearing:

Can I touch your hair?

For starters, keep your hands off of my head and seriously learn some basic history facts.

But you don’t look it… Are you sure you’re Latino?

Nope, I’m having a temporary identity crisis. Come on, guys. What, exactly, is a Latina supposed to look like?

But you were born here, right? Then you must be African-American.


And you must be missing couple of chapters in your history books.

No quiero parecer chismoso but who is black, your dad or your mom?


Do you want a paternity test or would my word be enough? Come on, guys, it’s not hard: Being a black Latino doesn’t necessarily mean you have one white/tan Latino parent and one black parent.

Have you ever straightened your hair? You’d look so pretty.

I love my pajón, period. Go ahead, Google the term, I’ll wait.

You’re really mixed, right? Exactly how black are you?



Get over it! While you’re at it, research the difference between culture and race.

Tienes que ser dominicana o boricua, for sure.

Black Latinos can be from ANYWHERE! Panama, Cuba, Mexico, Brazil and on and on and on.

You can’t be both Latino and black.

I thought people couldn’t be noisy and ignorant at the same time, yet here we both are.

Do you speak Spanish? ¿Hablas español?


Not all Latinos speak Spanish, and not everyone who speaks Spanish is Latino. You should work on that accent, though.

You must love salsa music. You know, ¡Azucar!


Go take a walk to stereotype land and stop putting Afro-Latinos in a box. (BTW- who doesn’t love Celia Cruz?)

READ: @blaxicansofla Gets an Intimate Portrayal of What It’s Like Growing Up Black & Mexican

Theory time: Why do you suppose it’s been so hard for people both within and outside the Latino community to understand the difference between race and ethnicity? 

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