The ABC has put a caller on the air who praised Hitler for killing gay people.

The caller, a man named Don, phoned to complain about a studio guest advocating for the yes vote on marriage equality, Junkee has reported.

He said that Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commissioner Kristen Hilton was out of line to advocate for the yes vote and should remain neutral.

“The commission has taken this very deliberate and positive support in marriage equality, because we believe… that the current restrictions on same-sex couples being allowed to marry constitutes discrimination,” said Hilton.

When host Jon Faine attempted to wrap up the conversation, Don asked if he could say one more thing.

“Hitler had put all those kind of people in their own concentration camps—it’s one of the two good things he did,” said Don.

Faine asked Don to repeat himself before ending the call.

The ABC has defended its procedure in dumping the call when it became overtly offensive.

“The call lasted just under three minutes and was civil until the caller made a highly offensive remark referencing Hitler,” said a spokesperson.

“Once Jon had clarified what the caller had said, the call was immediately terminated.”

Tiernan Brady of the Equality Campaign said the call was a reminder of the need for respectful debate.

“We must never forget that this is a survey about real people’s lives,” he said.

“It is about the members of our families, our friends, neighbours and workmates who just happen to be gay and simply wish to have the same status and dignity in law.

“The Equality Campaign will not be provoked. We remain totally committed to a campaign of respect and dignity that aims to unite Australians, not divide them.”

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