I’m assuming that you are much younger than I am. I lived the Nixon era and the aftermath. The anger we are seeing today against Trump and his crimes is very much like the anger against Nixon and his crimes during that time. Putting Nixon on trial would have destroyed the country.
Ford’s decision was incredibly courageous in the face of the wrath of the entire country. He didn’t want to see the country torn apart. So he pardoned Nixon and allowed him to go into exile in NJ.
The pardon was hugely controversial. People transferred their anger against Nixon to Ford. But once Nixon was removed from public life, the temperature of the country cooled off. We were able to reunite and move beyond Watergate.
History and articles written by people who did not live during the era they write about are far different from lived experience. They lack context, emotions and the small details that made all the different to those of us who lived through it.