President Obama on Monday "met" "Lucy," the skeletal remains of a 3.2 million-year-old precursor to humans that Obama was told makes all human beings related, including Obama and would-be president Donald Trump.
Obama was with Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn, and Dr. Zeresenay Alemseged, the head of the California Academy of Sciences. Alemseged used Lucy, a female hominid, to explain how everyone in the Homo genus is related.
"It shows that every single person here, 7 billion people, including Donald Trump, came down through the chain," joked Alemseged, an Ethiopian native.
"That's amazing," Obama said, according to a pool report of the meeting. "So Lucy was on the chain to Homo sapiens."
Alemseged said there were many jumps between Lucy and modern man, and said evidence suggests Homo sapiens emerged in Ethiopia.
The famous fossils discovered in Ethiopia's Hadar region in 1974 by American paleoanthropologist Donald Johanson traveled the U.S. for six years as part of an exhibit that partially benefited Ethiopian museums.
Afterward, Obama referenced "meeting" Lucy during his toast at the state dinner.
"When you see our ancestor, 3.5 million years old, we are reminded that Ethiopians, Americans, all people in the world are part of the same human family," Obama said to the roughly 300 people at the dinner in the National Palace. "And as one of the professors who was describing the artifacts correctly pointed out, so much of the hardship and conflict and sadness and violence that occurs around the world is because we forget that fact.
"We look at superficial differences as opposed to seeing the fundamental connection that we all share," Obama said.
In 2006, Alemseged found nearly complete remains of a 3.3 million-year-old hominid child from the same species as Lucy. Lucy is 40 percent complete whereas Alemseged's "world's oldest child," is the most complete skeleton of a human ancestor discovered.