I’ve heard it said so many times about marriage, “Why do we need a certificate to prove our love? It’s just a piece of paper!” Well, you don’t need it for your love, but you do need it to inform the rest of society of your intentions and that you aren’t just fornicating. Consider this: when you apply for a job, the employer knows that your college diploma (or high school diploma) won’t fully qualify you for the position. They know they will have to train you. But if you falsify your educational history and it is discovered, you will be fired. Does anyone complain about employers seeking degreed persons, saying “It’s only a piece of paper”? No. Both the marriage certificate and the diploma have to have real backing behind them to mean anything, i.e., committed love or an education. The “paper” in both cases is meant to reassure the rest of society that you aren’t just a screw up, pun intended.