I agree somewhat. but ultimately, the reason the government is involved in marriage is to recognize legal property rights and parental rights stemming from marriage. No one is forced to get a legal marriage unless they want state recognition of it for taxes, inheritance and the rest. If you want those legal protections/rights/etc... then you have to register your marriage with the state and they have some rules you have to abide by for that.I'm not sure I see any way you can garner those legal benefits and not have the government involved in the business of marriage.
@sigfried I dont see how parental rights require marriage. As for property rights, it should belong to whoever bought the property.
@fiendishdragonx OK let's say you have a married couple. One of them is in an accident, incapacitated, and needs someone else to make a medical decision. The hospital refuses to recognize the spouse's ability to make that decision. A man dies, leaving his wife behind. He didn't have a will. His brother arrives and claims all the man's property. What recourse does the wife (just some random woman in the eyes of the law) have to claim her husband's property?These are just a couple of a great many scenarios that marriage laws were designed to answer.
@sigfried I can see those situations, is there anyway to privatize marriage records, like have some form of marriage insurance or something similar, instead of having the state do it.
@fiendishdragonx You certainly could, but again, because all laws are upheld and enforced by the state, as are all private contracts, it won't be enforcible unless the state recognizes it.Personally, I think that we should change the laws somewhat. Currently, in most of the US, you need a license to marry. AKA you have to get permission ahead of time. I think it should be changed such that you get a recognition after the fact. So you go ahead and marry and then register that with the state. They could still refuse to recognize it for various reasons. (such as a child marriage for instance)It wouldn't change too much, but I think it better reflects the way it should be, people choose to marry and then alert the government to that fact so that they have legal recourse if needed.