Listen, I liked Yogi Berra -- at least I admire his skill as an athlete and his way with words, and he seems to have only friends among his colleagues -- but I think Obama is wrong to award him the Presidential Medal of Freedom. The same is true of John Wayne; Ronald Reagan was wrong to give him the Presidential Medal of Freedom. If we want to create a medal for the president's favorite performer, my only objection is the award is frivolous (almost as much so as the Nobel Peace Prize).
Just don't say that the award is "America's highest civilian honor". By its very nature, surely the Gold Lifesaving Medal, which the Coast Guard can issue to anyone, including civilians, must be a higher honor -- no acting, singing, or sports accomplishment can truly be more meritorious than saving a life! Particularly when civilians risk their lives to save the lives of strangers -- as Lenny Skutnik did when Air Florida Flight 90 struck the 14th Street Bridge in Washington, D.C. -- whatever the nation's highest civilian honor is, they should have it. A good case could also be made for someone like Chesley Sullenberger, whose skill, calmness, and good judgment saved many lives.