The current use of the term "McGovern Democrat" by George Bush and other Republicans as an aphorism of contempt is indeed rather a compliment and a badge of honor to me. Former Sen. George McGovern of South Dakota is correct in telling his grandsons not to "get too agitated" about its use "as a kind of swearword" (Part I, July 1).
Having supported and worked for McGovern in 1972 is a source of great pride to me and to many Democrats. For the Republicans to have adopted the phrase as a negative in the coming campaign is a mistake and a miscalculation both politically and morally.
As McGovern has said, the ideals of compassion and peace he espoused and we fought for 16 years ago have been vindicated and accepted by the American people in 1988.
MORGAN A. THIEME