The “shock value” of officially scientific concepts of the subhuman was a harbinger of things to come.
Prediction: Neanderthals will suddenly become just like us if a different set of putative “less than human” bones turns up. So long as there is no other “not quite human” in easy view, it really doesn’t matter what Neanderthals actually did. They’ll still have to be cast that way to appear in the approved drama of human evolution.
This kind of find is treated as problematic because it means that the missing link is still missing. Nobody is the subhuman. That’s not good news for a Darwinian approach to human evolution, in which someone must be the subhuman.
From ScienceDaily: Neanderthals have been imagined as the inferior cousins of modern humans, but a new study by archaeologists at UCL reveals for the first time that they produced weaponry advanced enough to kill at a distance. The study, published in Scientific Reports, examined the performance of replicas of the 300,000 year old Schöningen spears […]