Not sure what your point is? It is what it is, color is a subjectively derived term.
It's subjective for humans, imperical for cameras.
"White balance" does not always easily get us the pictures that we remember, nor the pictures that we want. We are in it for the photography, are we not?
Absolutely in it for the photography, and for me, the videography. I understand fully that the technically correct white balance might not be the desired result, but lets walk before we run here, the OP asked about understanding white balance.
Once you get to a certain level of competence with anything you can start to play about, break the rules with confidence and get an intended effect, but the rules, the science are where you start.
I prefer to get my composition, focus etc right. Rather worry about things that can be fixed later.... later.
I prefer to get it all right in camera. I'm coming from a video perspective I suppose, where I have 25 frames every second for up to 12 mins to fix. Easier to get it as right as possible in camera.
And I've found this approach helps my photography. In video I will spend time filtering different CT sources, running manual WB, recording a test strip with colour and gamma charts, I wouldn't expect most folk to do this with their stills, and I certainly don't.
The OP asked about white balance, answers like 'it's subjective' don't really tell them anything. Get the fundamentals in place and then start playing. I use Apple Color, I have Magic Bullet and Looks plug ins for FCP, Premiere and After-Effects, so I fully acknowledge the benefits of grading,and the impact this can have on the footage for the viewer, and so it follows for stills, but my starting point is always getting it neutral in camera, then I can do anything I like with it.
The grading might be subjective, but the science of colour temperature is anything but. Understanding that different light sources look different to an objective piece of apparatus like a camera is the first step to achieving the results you want, be these graded within in inch of their lives or otherwise.