They sat in the congressional chamber that is divided down the middle by an aisle. And providing easy access to the restrooms is not the primary function of this passageway... Defeating the people on the other side of the aisle – and the ideas they represent – in next year's elections was foremost on their minds. And there they gathered last night to hear the State of the "Union" Address.

And rightly so. We may have different ideas, but this nation is united around the ideals expressed in a certain two-century old document. Good ideals. Just ideals. Yes, we have disagreements, and sometimes we foolishly let them get to our heads and we take them personally, but every once in a while we have to take stock and realize that we are a union. And the state of the union is strong.

We have many different problems and threats that we must address. We'll handle them all—as long as the union remains strong.

I think we can all use occasional State of the Union assessments. In our marriages. In our synagogues. And for us Jews, as a nation.