[Marxism] the theft continues: Judges Back Study of Ancient Human Remains
legaultm2000 at yahoo.com
Thu Feb 5 18:20:50 MST 2004
February 5, 2004
Judges Back Study of Ancient Human Remains
By MATTHEW PREUSCH
SEATTLE, Feb. 4 - A federal appeals court panel ruled Wednesday that ancient human remains at the center of a long-running dispute involving American Indian tribes, scientists and the federal government should be released for study by archaeologists.
The 9,000-year-old remains, known as Kennewick Man, have been kept under wraps since 1998 in a Seattle museum while the courts and federal agencies determined whether they were the property of tribes in the Northwest.
The ruling makes available to scientists an important piece of the archaeological record of North America.
Dr. Douglas Owsley, the head of physical anthropology at the Smithsonian Institution's Museum of Natural History and a plaintiff in the case, said that recovery of a skeleton as well preserved and dated as Kennewick Man was extremely rare and that the ruling would assure scientists access to such remains.
"There really is a right to study these skeletons and learn something from the person," Dr. Owsley said.
Northwest tribes have argued that Kennewick Man is their ancestor and should be reburied according to ritual and tradition without further study by scientists.
Marley Hochendoner, spokeswoman for the Nez Perce tribe, a defendant in the case, would not say whether the tribe would appeal.
"The tribe is reviewing the decision and is considering all avenues," Ms. Hochendoner said.
The remains were discovered in 1996 when teenagers on their way to watch a boat race stumbled upon a skull and other bone fragments on the north bank of the Columbia River near Kennewick, Wash.
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