On a summer day in 1996, a young boy picked up a round rock he had found in the river to prank his friend. “Look, I found skull!” He said, turning to the other boy. To his abject horror, he saw the rock had teeth. Little did the boy know, that day he started what would be a 20-year-long battle over who had “claim” to the body, bringing up issues of race, religion, and science. - When samples of the skeleton, dubbed the Kennewick Man, were sent to analysis, scientists were shocked to discover the man was over 9000 years old. The shock increased when they recognised the skull shape as being “european-looking” (europeans only came to North America a little over 500 years ago) These discoveries sparked conflict between the scientists who wanted to run as many tests as possible and the native Americans who claimed him as their “Ancient One” who they wanted to return to the earth ASAP. - After 20 years of legal battles, the court finally ruled that the kennewick man was, indeed, closer in DNA to the native Americans than to the Europeans, and thus the skeleton was returned to the native tribes for a proper burial in 2016.
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