Tell me this. Why should I get married? What difference will it make to my relationship? How will society be enriched by me signing a piece of legal paperwork with my boyfriend?
We've been together for nearly 10 years, we're committed to each other and we're in love. We both know these things. What else is there to it?
Of course, to a certain extent my relationship is not related to the discussion you're having because I don't want to have children. Leaving aside the discussion of the fact that all the language I'm hearing on the news assumes that all couples, married or cohabiting, are also parents I would dispute the idea that getting the paperwork would make any difference to any putative children we were going to have either.
Yes, children benefit from stable long-term relationships with adults who can give them love, stability and care. In most cases these are their parents and it's difficult to do on your own because it's such a commitment. I don't believe that our choosing to register our relationship with you would make us any more or less likely to provide that care to any children we had. Now that marriage is a purely voluntary institution, many more of those embarking on it will have the kind of relationship which enables them to provide this but the bedrock of that is the relationship itself, not the status. You won't create more genuine partnerships of people who can love and support each other by offering £20 per week to those who've been in and signed their names.
Marriage is not what makes some families special. Love is.