I do not challenge the right of Cora and his players to protest the U.S. government’s failures in aiding Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria in 2017 (Cora’s concern) or to protest any other government policy. But the president was honoring the Red Sox on behalf of the nation and even on behalf of Los Angeles Dodgers, New York Yankees and Houston Astros fans, whose teams had been vanquished by Boston on the way to the title. Trump has the authority and right to speak for all Americans when he is acting for all of us, as he did at the White House ceremony.

Protesting the Trump administration’s failures can be done at other times and in other venues — the halls of Congress are a good forum, but well-known sports figures do not lack for megaphones where their opinions can be expressed. In all cases, though, criticism of the president, any president, should be lodged in a civil manner, with solid arguments.

One of the duties of citizenship is the making of fine distinctions. Baseball too is a game of fine distinctions.