THE longer this same-sex marriage debate rolls on the less claim we can lay on being anything resembling a progressive nation.
The sideshow that is the debate over whether a plebiscite or a free vote is the best way forward is the latest chapter in what has been a debacle.
Voters have been sucked in hook, line and sinker on this, the Opposition are milking it for all it's worth and the Coalition looks nothing more than a label at best.
Senator Pauline Hanson's assessment that anybody feeling strongly enough about "it" should simply move to a country that recognises same-sex marriage is an indicator of the sort of Neanderthal, brainless public debate we're in for if a plebiscite is pursued.
In fact, let's be honest, regardless of the topic we're probably in for that level of public debate from Sen Hanson.
But that's an aside.
People are worried about the public discussion degenerating into dangerous territory, violent, vitriolic and damaging to young homosexuals need to realise that horse has already bolted.
The fact one of our elected leaders is telling homo- sexuals that feel "strongly enough" about being considered equal that they should p*** off overseas is about as close to the bottom of the commentary barrel you can get.
What an incredibly small-minded view.
The fact she's basically recycling her stance on Islam and Sharia Law and using it against homosexuality shouldn't be ignored either.
One-dimensional politicians desperately beating a drum two-thirds of the population disagree with are getting far too much of the spotlight and dominating the discussion more than they should.
Given recent polling found an overwhelming majority of the nation supports same- sex marriage, wouldn't it be fair to suggest Hanson, Bernardi and any other politicians walking around with stackhats on fearing the apocalypse if two men or women can marry should actually be the ones that have to head overseas to somewhere that celebrates inequality?
My gut feeling is that most of us are more intelligent than the grey-matter short names mentioned above and realise the sky won't actually cave in if gays can marry.
That there are in fact greater issues facing this country and that every day we allow this to dominate countless other issues slip through the cracks of public scrutiny.
A perfect outcome for an Opposition gaining mileage out of the plebiscite debacle and a free pass for a wafer- thin Coalition on issues that should be dominating discussions.
The spotlight will no doubt soon shift from same-sex marriage to another spill. Yawn, rinse and repeat.