I agree completely with liberal Bloomberg columnist Ann Woolner on the issue:
Let religions carry the burden of deciding who can marry whom. Some rabbis won’t marry Jew to Christian. Catholic and Episcopalian priests, in the main, say no to the previously married, or at least make it very difficult to try again.
This is a proper role for religion, which you can take or leave. But the state has no business setting those boundaries…
Let religion marry people in whatever manner honors the faith. Let atheists and anyone else write their own vows, design their own ceremonies and deny marriage to whomever they wish.
The state’s only role is granting legal status to couples, making sure that both parties are of age and otherwise unmarried. Call it a civil union or a domestic partnership. But grant it to interfaith couples, the previously married, to same- sex couples, just as it is granted to first-timers of the opposite sex and same religion. Or no religion.
The State has been involved in marriage longer than the concept of “separation between church and state” has been in existence. In this case tradition does not make it right, and marriage needs to be recognized as a religious event – not a civil one. In its place should be an agreement based on corporate law – a legal partnership that determines asset ownership, division and responsibility. These legal entities already exist for businesses, so why not apply them to personal relationships?