Watching Trump’s impeachment trial was difficult. Any of us who have experienced any of the multiple forms of abuse and trauma will recognize the pattern.

“Anyone not supporting Trump, anyone who voted for Biden, deserved what happened on Jan. 6 in our Capitol.”

No, we definitely did not deserve it. And all those Senate Republicans who looked for an excuse not to impeach show they side with the abusers, against most of us who say Trump’s conduct and that of his violent supporters was not acceptable.

Should there be a different option than impeachment for a former president? Yes. And I expect people will continue to look for better ones.

In the meantime, this gives us as Americans the same opportunity to look at ourselves as when we watched fire hoses and police dogs unleashed against children who didn’t deserve it, as we mourned the numerous assassinations of political figures in the 1960s, etc. Who has not been treated in ways they don’t deserve?

We all deserve elections we have reason to trust and be proud of. We don’t yet have those in New Hampshire or in the United States, but there are lots of people across the political spectrum who have been working steadily toward that goal for many years and gaining ground little by little against tremendous odds.

Politicians as a group can’t and won’t give us that. We can’t expect those who have succeeded in our current rotten election system to change it for all of us. Many will continue to work for their team against the other team and forget about all of us ordinary people who want everyone’s vote to count and be counted.

I don’t believe our young people will accept anything less than truly free and fair elections so we can throw the bums out when necessary. We older folks need to be on the future’s side, regardless of political preferences. If people didn’t know that before Jan. 6, they have no excuse not to know it now.