Boston, MA– After a week of controversy leading up to the Boston Red Sox's Thursday afternoon visit to the White House to be honored for their 2018 World Series championship, during which about a third of the team opted not to go due to Donald Trump's hateful rhetoric and lies towards immigrants and Puerto Rico, the event has finally concluded. Notably, as pointed out by David Price, the team's white players (plus longtime Trump supporter J.D. Martinez) were the ones in attendance at the ceremony. There was certainly a rift brewing, but hopefully the team can put that behind them now that they have finally gotten into a groove in the season.
But it can certainly still be a bit tough to see one's teammates smiling and hobnobbing with someone who has been an active villain towards communities of racial minorities in this country. If I was on the Red Sox, I certainly would have opted not to go to the White House and I would feel a bit iffy about the reasons for why my teammates felt so comfortable in doing so themselves. But who knows if manager Alex Cora has already spoken to the team about this controversy?
Regardless, the visit seemed relatively low-key as the members of the Red Sox visited veterans of the military and the U.S. Congress while they were in Washington, D.C., as well as their visit to the executive branch. Trump gave a speech and the team gave him a jersey and that was that. But it seems pretty clear that the people in charge of press at the White House are not the biggest baseball fans.
Not only did the White House refer to the Red Sox as the "Boston Red Socks," but they also proclaimed them to be the champions of the "World Cup Series." It's safe to say that many at the White House had no idea who any of these people were. The slip-up gained popularity and was even joked about on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon and Late Night with Seth Meyers. Meyers is a noted Red Sox fan and Fallon, of course, starred in Fever Pitch.
I miss the days when the White House visit could just be about a selfie between David Ortiz and President Barack Obama.