A lot of religious extremists pulled out the stops to oppose this, most notably ex-NFL player David Tyree and Archbishop Dolan. One is tempted to ask, "don't you feel stupid", we that is probably a feeling they have on more than just today. It's also pointless to ask if they are furious beyond comprehension, for the same reason -- they're always furious about things. As it turns out, the two conditions are connected, because, contrary to myth, ignorance is not quite as blissful as advertised, at least for these people.
Tyree was notable for claiming that this *law*, if passed, would lead to *lawlessness* or "anarchy". He later backpedalled when he was confronted with the fact that (1) he didn't even know what the word meant (or how to spell it) and (2) he had no evidence for any of his claims except what he heard his preacher lying to him about on Sunday mornings. He even said that if he could give back his superbowl winning catch that he would do to prevent gay marriage, at which point they stopped the interview and had to tell him that Hot Tub Time Machine was not a factual documentary.
Dolan, on the other hand, is not ignorant by circumstance, but by vigorous, conscious efforts and choices. He still has his head in .... the Middle Ages ... arguing that the state doesn't have the right or authority to define marriage, despite the fact that all states and nations have done it, pretty much since the Middle Ages. He is still railing against modernism in a post-post-modernist world.
Of course, he's also playing the standard game of equivocating about the difference between state marriage and church marriage. He knows the distinction, but he thinks others are too dumb to catch his obvious maneuver. After all the Church doesn't automatically recognize any marriage that it does not conduct, but you don't have to be married in a church to be legally married. He knows that people can be legally married by a justice of the peace, and that this form of legal marriage was all that the New York Senate was ever considering. Hello, they're the state law-making body.
The most hilarious maneuver of all was for this man with the title Archbishop to claim for a state to adjust its own marriage requirements amounted to the establishment of a "secular theocracy". He then made the reporter kiss his ring, and returned to palace to issue more nonsensical decrees condemning anything and everything that is not his part of his church.
He even claimed that the definition of marriage was "as old as human reason", but apparently thinks that reason had a rather late start, because "1 man + 1 woman" was not the old testament definition of marriage. It was more like "1 man + 1 woman, her sister, cousins, servants, and goats". Well maybe not the goat part, but you get the idea.
Marriage has changed hugely even in the last century or two. Mormons were practicing polygamy officially until the 1890's (and still do in places today). Laws against inter-racial marriage existed in the US until quite recently. The age of marriage varies and has been tweaked. Common law marriages were defined. Genetic testing and licensing were required. There are tons of things that have changed about marriage, all well within the scope of human reason.
Perhaps Dolan just meant that he can't be reasonable on the subject, but I think we already knew that.