Retired University of Hawai`i professor Dr. Milton Diamond appeared in a debate before England’s Cambridge Union Society late last year, an occasion he won’t soon forget.
“Of the several hundred talks for which I’ve been invited over the years, I consider this one of my greatest honors,” said Dr. Diamond. Previous speakers before the Cambridge Union have included such notable figures as the Dalai Lama, U.S. Presidents Theodore Roosevelt and Ronald Reagan, scientist Stephen Hawking and actress Lady Judith Dench.
In his modest fashion, Dr. Diamond expressed a touch of astonishment at being invited to appear before one of the world’s oldest and most prestigious student debating societies. “They pick from around the world and have their choice of the best speakers, and most knowledgeable representatives they can find,” Dr. Diamond explained.
Founded in 1815, the Cambridge Society debates “serve to engage and to challenge the presumptions and prejudices of a wide range of ideas, opinions and beliefs through the use of rational argument and credible intellectual exchange, and our speaker events provide a forum for young people to challenge and learn from public figures from a variety of backgrounds,” according to its website.
Dr. Diamond, 2009 recipient of the University of Hawai`i Regents Medal for Research, has spent his professional life involved in teaching, clinical work and research – particularly in sexual behavior and reproduction and understanding sexual development. His research has resulted in 150 publications, nine books and numerous television and radio interviews.
Professor Diamond’s debate, “opposing the motion, This House Believes Genders Exist to Oppress”, was recorded for YouTube during his appearance on November 22, 2012.
Note: It’s shaping up to be a busy 2013 for Dr. Diamond. He has been asked to be the Keynote speaker at the Empire Conference in New York in April and to give three talks in May at Uppsala University in Sweden.