As part of the long history of the Jewish people, we are accustomed to having our loyalty questioned, from Babylon to Rome to medieval Europe to contemporary America.  We remember how kings and leaders and governments have used the accusation of disloyalty to separate Jews from others, to impose disabilities on us, to oppress us, and to kill us.  We know how dangerous these accusations are, both to Jews and to other minorities–people of color, Muslims, immigrants, LGBTQ people–who have also too often been identified as outsiders and denied the same consideration and rights as their fellow citizens.  So we know that no matter where and when and from whose mouth our loyalty is attacked, we must stand up and oppose the false dichotomy between being Jewish and being a loyal citizen of the U.S. or whatever state we find ourselves in.
At the same time, we must realize that there is a consistent reason that Jews throughout history have been accused of disloyalty to human leaders and human governments.  As we will declare together on the High Holidays in just a few weeks, although we acknowledge the importance of human leadership structures, our ultimate loyalty is not to a human being or a human state.  We praise God as “the Ruler of the Rulers of Rulers” to emphasize that we do not bow down to humans, who are ultimately fallible, but only to God, who represents the divine values of justice, equality, peace, and love to which we commit ourselves.  Because we insist on being loyal to the values of Torah above any human being, we have been a constant thorn in the side of those human leaders who demand complete loyalty to themselves above all.  We have been blessed throughout our history to see those leaders fail and to see our faith in Torah rewarded.  In our effort to defend ourselves from charges of disloyalty in the human realm, may we never forget the divine values to which we must always remain loyal, no matter what any leader says.  And may our faith in the ultimate triumph of those values be rewarded.