I am for the stance that government has no business being involved in the personal relationship of two adults. Marriage came from the religious arena, and now a marriage isn't even valid until the state sanctions it. What a gross cross of church and state. I move that we get rid of the boiler plate, cookie cutter, one marriage fits all marriage license. No more 50/50 no-fault nuptials. When you and your fianc"e decide to get married you have a choice...either get married at your church, and the person that has the power to sanction a marriage is the pastor/minister. Or if you want to enter into a legal agreement, you and your fianc"e sit down with your lawyer and work out every detail. This way you are marrying on YOUR terms, not the government's terms, which is a big reason the divorce rate is 50%. If you wanted to go into business with someone, you can sign the articles of incorporation and then you are official owners, regardless of sexual orientation. This would eliminate the gay-marriage issue, by taking it out of the public and back into the couple's private life where it belongs. Also if there is a same sex couple, they would be able to file their taxes jointly, be on the same health insurance policy, and be able to list their partner as a beneficiary. The law will be changed to anyone that lives in your household, will be eligible for the previous perks you normally received being married. Rather than marital status, it will be changed to people in the household. Government meddling in your personal relationships should be last thing you want the state to be involved in. It is not the state's job to tell you what you can or can't do in the bedroom, in your relationships (with the exception of violence), or who you can voluntarily associate with. Any nuptial agreements that the couple arranges prior to their wedding, will be updated once a year with their tax return. The update will consist of division of pre-marital and post-marital assets, if marriage terminates, who pays for what regarding children...child support will be specific i.e. tuition, clothing, and health insurance while the other parents is responsible for room, board, food, recreation etc. as well as custody if the marriage terminates. This planning is essentially the equivalent of preparing a Will. If this happens (divorce), here's our plan.
I will be arguing that marriage should not be privatized. The civil institution of marriage has existed for hundreds of years, and is neither connected nor restricted by religious institutions and procedures. The United States recognizes that marriage is a civil right and therefore must be protected and regulated by the state. The solution to including gay marriage should not be privatizing marriage, but should be continual expansion of state recognition. The civil institution of marriage affords couples thousands of civil, financial and social benefits. It is essential that it remains a government institution.