Pauline Hanson Says That If You Want Marriage Equality You Can Just Move Somewhere Else

"If you feel so strongly about it, I'm sure you can move."

Turns out Asians and Muslims aren’t the only groups of people who Pauline Hanson would be perfectly happy to see the back of. Appearing yesterday on Melbourne’s LGBTQI radio station JOY 94.9, the leader of One Nation expressed her opposition to marriage equality, and suggested that if same-sex couples really felt strongly about the issue, they could just move to a country where it was legal.

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The Queensland senator admitted that many would find her views “old fashioned”, but said that by fighting for marriage equality rather than being content with civil unions, LGBTQI people and their supporters were trying to “take something away from the majority of society that we’ve grown up with.”

“I’ve come from a time when there was no discussion about gay marriage, or gay and lesbians living together, or whatever,” she said. “That’s my background, and that’s what I’ve grown up with.”

Putting aside the fact that this is what I’m used to is maybe the worst possible argument for denying someone their civil rights, the idea that allowing gay people to marry will somehow “take away” from society is obviously absurd. Dozens of countries around the world now have marriage equality, and last I checked they seem to be doing just fine.

Try telling that to Hanson though.

“I don’t care what other countries around the world are doing,” she said. “I don’t care what’s happening around the world. If you feel so strongly about it, well then I’m sure you can move to that country and then you can have the marriage.”

Now before you go suggesting that Hanson might be homophobic, keep in mind that she also told the station that she has had “a lot of gay friends over the years,” that she’s “associated with the gays” and even “worked with the gays.” So there you go. Case closed, I guess.

Hanson did say that she would be willing to put aside her personal beliefs and vote for marriage equality in parliament, but only if it received the support of the Australian people via a plebiscite. She also suggested that the proposed public vote should be delayed until the next federal election, in order to save taxpayer money.

“If you feel strongly about this, let’s put it to a plebiscite,” she said. “Let the people decide.”

Asked about the potential harm the public debate might do to the mental well-being of LGBTQI Australians, Hanson replied that “I think you are actually blowing that out of proportion to make that an excuse why you shouldn’t have a plebiscite.”

“I don’t believe there’s going to be hate. I think it would be a balanced debate,” said Hanson. Apparently no one told her that the radio station she was talking to had to be evacuated this week because someone sent in a bomb threat.

You can listen to the entire discussion with Hanson here, although personally I’m not sure why you’d want to.