Oldest Homo sapiens bones ever found shake foundations of the human story
: Idea that modern humans evolved in East Africa 200,000 years ago challenged by extraordinary discovery of 300,000-year-old remains in Moroccan mine
You have all seen this news by now, and would win the question on, "Wait, Wait! Don't tell me!" I am posting it because it is important.
Only a few weeks ago, we got the radical news that humans may have been in California way longer than expected
, like as long ago as 130,000 years ago - and maybe they were Neandertal.
Now, this latest discovery is claiming that homo sapiens were present in Morocco around 300,000 years ago. (That's 100,000 years prior to our supposed split-off from Neandertal - which makes me call THIS into question).
I find this completely reasonable. Homo Habilis roamed these areas widely, and was very similar to Homo Sapiens. Also - I have ALWAYS thought that the scientists who made conclusions based solely on excavations on the Great Rift Valley were arrogantly naive. The Great Rift Valley - yes, it was long frequented and populated by opportunistic hominids - but it has also been a very exploitable land formation. Relatively easy to extract bones there. That does not necessarilly mean that mankind originated there! There should be competent finds scattered all over Africa - and the globe - if only circumstance allows for their discovery. That's what happened in Morocco. Yo.
Regarding this find in Morocco: Beware of morphology. Can be a red herring. DNA is better.
However, the Chinese believe in a less hierarchical tree for the emergence of humans, than is presented in the out-of-Africa scheme, which is based on DNA. The Chinese have arguments against the DNA methods being used by the West. They believe in a more generalised, distributed, interactive emergence of mankind. Even though this view might be fueled by racism, we must keep our minds open to it. It takes all kinds. I, myself, feel that a less hierarchical, more distributed, view on evolution makes more sense. However, there is no reason why select populations would not have arisen out of such a soup, like stock market bubbles, to majorly influence evolution. Such has happened in later years, with the assistance of new technologies, like dogs, hoes, horses, weapons, and so forth. In fact, both the West and the Chinese are probably right in some way.