The Deseret News quoted State Rep. Chris Herrod as saying that during a visit to East Berlin he felt oppressed and learned to hate socialism ("Chris Herrod to take on Hatch, socialism in bid for U.S. Senate," Jan. 6). I don't doubt that East Berlin felt plenty oppressive in its day, but I think we need to be clear that the oppression came from a totalitarian communist regime, not from socialism.
In addition to his experience in communist East Berlin, I know that Herrod has also spent some time in Sweden, which is the model of a modern democratic socialist state and is no more oppressive than our own country. Herrod is a man of intelligence and of experience. He knows the difference between totalitarian communism and democratic socialism. He may not like socialism, but he should not try to imply that it is the same thing as Soviet-style communism.
Salt Lake City