Evolution Icon Evolution
Human Origins Icon Human Origins

Nine Gorilla Teeth and a Confession of Evolutionist Ignorance

As I’ve noted before, it is often only after Darwinists report a new fossil discovery that they retroactively admit how little they previously knew about a given evolutionary transition.

This happened again recently as a team of paleoanthropologists reported finding 6-7 million year-old fossil gorilla teeth that Nature News claimed “helps to fill in a huge gap in the fossil record.”

Accompanying this find, however, was a striking admission of ignorance regarding the evolution of humans:

“The human fossil record goes back 6 to 7 million years, but we know nothing about how the human line actually emerged from apes,” the researchers said in a statement on Wednesday that accompanied publication of their study in the journal Nature. “Chororapithecus gives us the first glimpse of the ape side background to the human origins story.”

(Michael Kahn, “Fossil hints at earlier split in our family tree,” 8/22/07)

So there you have it, these paleoanthropologists admit: “we know nothing about how the human line actually emerged from apes.” Typically such confessions of ignorance are accompanied by reports of a fossil find that actually provides some kind of interesting evidence for evolution. In this case, we got the confession, but they didn’t provide the supporting evidence for evolution. Nature admitted that the research team “based its conclusion on just nine teeth from at least three individuals of the species.” And just how interesting are these teeth? According to Nature News, “The teeth, eight molars and a canine, ‘are collectively indistinguishable from modern gorilla subspecies’ in size, proportion and scan-revealed internal structure.” If you don’t think this provides compelling evidence that humans evolved from ape-like species, join the club.

In sum, after this “huge gap”-filling find, we are left with nine gorilla teeth and the admission that “we know nothing about how the human line actually emerged from apes.” Perhaps in this case, the confession of ignorance about human evolution was not so retroactive after all.


Casey Luskin

Associate Director, Center for Science and Culture
Casey Luskin is a geologist and an attorney with graduate degrees in science and law, giving him expertise in both the scientific and legal dimensions of the debate over evolution. He earned his PhD in Geology from the University of Johannesburg, and BS and MS degrees in Earth Sciences from the University of California, San Diego, where he studied evolution extensively at both the graduate and undergraduate levels. His law degree is from the University of San Diego, where he focused his studies on First Amendment law, education law, and environmental law.