Michigan Memorial Funeral Home, Inc.

Funeral Home Park Crematory
These Companies are Separately Owned and Operated

Milton Diamond, sexologist and advocate for intersexed children, has died at the age of 90

He spoke out against doctors who recommended surgery for babies born with ambiguous genitalia, arguing that diversity should be embraced.

Academic conferences are usually quiet, but the 1973 International Symposium on Gender Identity, held in Dubrovnik, Yugoslavia, was an exception. All was quiet until a psychologist named John Money stood up and shouted: "Mickey Diamond, I hate your guts!".

Milton Diamond, a sexologist who had gone by the name Mickey since childhood, sat across the room. Dr. Mani and Dr. Diamond were bitter rivals: Dr. Mani, an established researcher at Johns Hopkins University, had long argued that sex and gender identities were neutral at birth and shaped largely by the infant's environment.

Dr. Diamond, who was just beginning his career at the University of Hawaii, strongly disagreed and stated this repeatedly, including in a widely read critique of Dr. Mauney's work published in 1965. In particular, he disagreed with Dr. Moni's recommendation that surgery be performed to "correct" genitalia in intersexed infants.

Dr. Mani rushed at Dr. Diamond, clawed at his face, insisting furiously that he was right.

Dr. Diamond's only response was, "There is no data".

At one point, according to eyewitnesses, Dr. Mani punched Dr. Diamond, although Dr. Diamond later said he did not remember this.

The incident, recounted by journalist John Colapinto in Rolling Stone magazine and in the subsequent book How Nature Made Him: The Boy Who Was Raised as a Girl (2000), has been particularly inflamed by Dr. Mauney's recent statement.

View All