Homophobia would be an irrational fear or hatred of homosexuals, if it really existed. The current usage of terms like "homophobic" and "homophobe" imply that all opposition to homosexuality is crazy. Actually there are many sociological, psychological and medical reasons that many logically-thinking people oppose homosexuality. People who abuse terms like "homophobia" are implying (whether they know it or not), that it's impossible to "love the sinner and hate the sin". No one talks about opposition to alcoholism in terms of hatred, because groups like Alcoholics Anonymous have popularized the view that drinking alcohol is addictive. The term homophobia, when it is applied to every criticism of homosexuality, implies that all such criticism is irrational (see phobia).
Commenting on its psychological use, WorldNetDaily managing editor David Kupelian states,
This is how the "marketers of evil" work on all of us. They transform our attitudes by making us feel as though our "super uncomfortable" feelings toward embracing unnatural or corrupt behavior of whatever sort – a discomfort literally put into us by a loving God, for our protection – somehow represent ignorance or bigotry or weakness.
Homophobia is an etymologically incorrect term which most directly denotes "an unreasoning fear of or antipathy toward homosexuals and homosexuality", but it also includes a fear of increased political and social power of homosexuals in advancing their agenda. The term is used regularly by activists to describe several kinds of people, which may or may not match the actual definition of "fear of homosexuals and homosexuality". The recipients of the homophobia label include those who feel uncomfortable around homosexuals, those who reveal that they oppose "gays," and even those who may privately support homosexuality but who fail to publicly support homosexuals when called upon to do so.
Conservative Christians and other people who strongly object to homosexuality often take offense at this term, which had led to the use of the term heterophobia to describe those who manifest an antipathy to those who uphold heterosexuality as normative or exclusively valid. While the term phobia is an irrational fear of something, nobody is afraid of homosexuals, and nobody fears contracting homosexuality. That is in contrast to heterophobia, whose existence has been documented.
Homophobia - Etymology and definition
The word homophobia comes from combining the Greek prefix homo-, meaning "same", and suffix -phobia, meaning "fear of". In its early usage, the term described heterosexual fears that others might think they were homosexual  The neologism was promoted by George Weinberg, a gay activist and psychologist, who attempted to define it in clinical literature shortly before the downgrading of homosexuality as a mental illness by the American Psychiatric Association in 1973. Weinberg claimed it was "the dread of being in close quarters with homosexuals -- and in the case of homosexuals themselves, selfloathing." The term then entered common usage beginning with pornographic publications. 
A study by University of Arkansas researchers concluded that the word homophobia, is technically incorrect. Doctoral student Bunmi Olatunji, lead author of the study stated that homophobia is not actually a fear, and therefore it should not be "pathologized," or treated as a disease would be treated. The 138 participants in the 2001-2002 study, whose gender preferences were unknown to the researchers, were asked to complete a series of questionnaires and surveys. While some subjects displayed conservative sexual attitudes of elevated levels of disgust and dread of contamination toward homosexuals, the results showed a negative correlation between attitudes about homosexuals and measures of fear or anxiety.
The term's meaning has not been accepted or agreed upon within the psychological therapeutic community. William O'Donohue and Christine E. Caselles  have concluded based upon research within the therapeutic community a clear understanding of the term has not been adequately evaluated and it is not clear whether the term can be accurately characterized. They have concluded, "the construct of homophobia, as it is usually used, makes an illegitimately pejorative evaluation of certain open and debatable value positions, much like the former disease construct of homosexuality."
Gregory M. Herek, a psychology professor at the University of California at Davis, and a recognized authority on prejudice against lesbians and gay men, credits psychologist George Weinberg with inventing the word homophobia in the late 1960s. However, the word "has a number of problems with it," said Herek, particularly because there is no basis for the "phobia" suffix in a clinical sense.
Connie Ress, a regional media manage at the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation stated that she had no intention of dropping the use of the word due to semantical controversy, as discrimination against gay and the need for laws to protect them was the real issue.
The term homophobia is primarily used by people supportive of homosexuality, to disparage persons who in any way oppose homosexuality and its practices. Some claim that "it is intended to sound like a form of mental illness", but this does not describe its popular use or the definition of the word. According to the National Association for Research & Therapy on Homosexuality (NARTH), gay-rights advocate Gregory M. Herek, Ph.D. wrote that the term "homophobia" was useful in pushing forward the gay agenda in our culture. "In his paper on homophobia, stigma, and sexual prejudice, Dr. Herek suggests that although the term "homophobia" was useful in pushing forward the gay agenda in our culture, the term may be too limited in its scope today."
For example, NARTH says,
The term "homophobia" is often used inaccurately to describe any person who objects to homosexual behavior on either moral, psychological or medical grounds. Technically, however, the terms actually denotes a person who has a phobia—or irrational fear—of homosexuality. Principled disagreement, therefore, cannot be labeled "homophobia." 
The more recent, restrictively pejorative use of the term "homophobia" reflects upon the intents of the gay community to skew perceptions of them (versus their detractors) by manipulating the language used to describe them.
It was recently announced that the Associated Press has dropped the term "homophobia" from its Style Book and will no longer use that term in its news reports, noting that the use of the suffix "-phobia" (referring to an "irrational or uncontrollable fear") should not be used in political or social contexts in AP reports, including "homophobia" (and its derivative "homophobe").
Claims of Internalized homophobia
The therapeutic community is largely divided between proponents of gay gene theory who believe a person is born gay and will always be gay, and proponents of Reparative therapy who believe with sympathy and understanding a homosexual can be relieved of afflictions if they so desire. Gay gene advocates wish to inform homosexuals that their sexual orientation may be based in genetics, whereas restoration therapy advocates claim that it is to cruel to "brainwash" young people into believing there is no hope of ever leading a "heterosexual lifestyle".
- In the classic triadic family we have a sensitive boy who did not get the close, affirming relationship with his father that would have confirmed him in his gender identity, and a mother who is likely to be over-close and standing in the way between father and son. The father was not supportive enough in affirming, recognizing and reinforcing the boy's maleness. 
Nicolosi adds many gay men admit that no matter how liberated they are, they always struggle, on some deeper level, with a sense of inferiority or self-loathing. Some therapists refer to this as internalized homophobia. Nicolosi attributes this feeling to an internal process, unrelated to social stigma, which precedes same-sex attractions.
Homophobia as an "Irrational Fear"
The suffix "phobia" suggests an irrational fear, but it is most often used as a attack term by gay rights groups to suggest that opposition to homosexuality is irrational and hateful. Dr. Sander J. Breiner of NARTH has stated, "it would be very valuable for society in general, and therapists in particular, to have a clear picture of homophobia separated from all the other topics that have been lumped under that rubric."  Of the myriads of references to the term in popular and other sociologic publications Breiner observes, "There is no personal, internal, institutional, or cultural homophobia. The terms do not exist in the recognized scientific literature...There is only one homophobia, which has been properly defined," in the the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM)  developed by the American Psychiatric Association. Breiner, an advocate of Reparative therapy, acknowledges "There is no doubt that homophobia exists" as an irrational fear among both homosexuals and heterosexuals. In response, many Christians look to Bible verses such as, 2 Timothy 1:7: "For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.
Noted homosexual activist and pornographer Clinton Fein, in his article, “The Gay Agenda” stated, “Homophobic inclinations alone, even without any actions, should be criminal and punishable to the full extent of the law.”
Erik Holland, author of "The Nature of Homosexuality," perceives that homosexuals have become so reckless in labeling others homophobic that "anyone who questions their labeling someone a homophobe himself. Even quoting factual statistics about the connection between homosexuality and AIDS is allegedly homophobic." In addition, according to pro homosexual author Vernon A Wall, "even acceptance of homosexuality can be seen as a form of homophobia, because to talk about the acceptance of homosexuality is to imply that there is something about homosexuality that needs acceptance."
Homophobia as a psychological tactic
Though some who oppose homosexuality may actually be motivated by animosity, yet rather than the use of the term indicating a serious belief that most or all of the people opposed to homosexuality are repressed homosexuals, or possess an irrational fear of the same sex or homosexuals in particular, the widespread use of the term has been increasingly evidenced as being a means of psychological intimidation and mind control used in promoting the Homosexual Agenda. Due to what homophobia has come to convey, a powerful stigma is attached to those who even conscientiously oppose homosexual practices, thus silencing many who might otherwise object to it. In relation to such oppression, psychologist Nicholas Cummings, former president of the American Psychological Association (APA), observed, "Homophobia as intimidation is one of the most pervasive techniques used to silence anyone who would disagree with the gay activist agenda." In addressing 100 fellow professionals, Cummings related that while writing "Destructive Trends in Mental Health" with psychologist Rogers Wright, a number of fellow psychologists who were invited to participate flatly turned them down, fearing loss of tenure, loss of promotion, and other forms of professional retaliation. "We were bombarded by horror stories," Dr. Cummings said. "Their greatest fear was of the gay lobby, which is very strong in the APA."
While most but not all homosexuals may agree with such tactics, it has been explicitly promoted by leaders in the homosexual movement. In what is widely regarded as the handbook for the “gay” agenda," Harvard trained marketing experts and social scientists Marshall Kirk (1957 - 2005) and Hunter Madsen advocated avoiding portraying gays as aggressive challengers, but as victims, while making those who opposed them as evil persecutors. As a means of the latter, they promoted “jamming,” in which Christians, traditionalists, or anyone else who opposes the “gay” agenda are publicly smeared. “In any campaign to win over the public, gays must be portrayed as victims in need of protection so that straights will be inclined by reflex to adopt the role of protector ... The purpose of victim imagery is to make straights feel very uncomfortable,” they suggested.
“Jam homo-hatred (i.e., disagreement with homosexual behaviors) by linking it to Nazi horror,” was the strategy of Kirk and Madsen. “Associate all who oppose homosexuality with images of ‘Klansmen demanding that gays be slaughtered,’ ‘hysterical backwoods preachers,’ ‘menacing punks,’ and a ‘tour of Nazi concentration camps where homosexuals were tortured and gassed.’" Thus, "propagandistic advertisement can depict homophobic and homohating bigots as crude loudmouths..."
What is seen by some as Kirk and Madsen’s most revealing admission is their statement, “[O]ur effect is achieved without reference to facts, logic, or proof.” "...the person's beliefs can be altered whether he is conscious of the attack or not"
Marshall Kirk died in 2005 at the age of 48. The cause of death has not been publicly revealed.
Author Robert Bauman additionally records, “It makes no difference that the ads are lies . . . because we’re using them to ethically good effect, to counter negative stereotypes that are every bit as much lies, and far more wicked ones.” 
There are increasing indications that prohomosex attempts at brainwashing have been highly effective, as assent to such an irrational perception by homosexuals, or assent to its deceptive tactics, is not confined to those within actual homosexual organizations, as mainstream media and academic publications often arbitrarily use the term to describe all those who oppose homosexuality, and its attendant practices. Recently, the government of Brazil relegated all who oppose homosexuality to being homophobic.
In an article titled, "First Things" (Aug/Sept. 1993), Professor Jerry Z. Muller described how the homosexual lobby has gained widespread acceptance in the educational realm.
[Their] strategy has been remarkably successful. With a rapidity largely attributable in large part to a total lack of articulate resistance, homosexual ideology has gained an unquestioned and uncontested legitimacy in American academic life. Within the academy, as within nonacademic elite culture, the definition of opposite to homosexuality as "homophobia - a definition which implies that it is impossible to give good reasons for the cultural disapproval of homosexuality - is the best evidence of the success of this strategy.
The American College of Pediatricians, commenting on one prototypical pro-homosexual bias which indicts contrary views as "homophobic", stated that such a response is "scientifically improper and demonstrates an anti-heterosexual viewpoint."
This has also resulted in extreme attempts to negate the Biblical injunctions against homoeroticism and to read it into the Bible, in seeking affirmation for the sin. See Homosexual misinterpretation
Fear of homophobia as a psychological condition
It may be speculated that the widespread response to labeling all who oppose homosexuals homophobic may itself be driven by an irrational fear of those who oppose them, in which homosexuals imagine that most or all of those who oppose them are motivated by irrational fears, and wish to do them harm, and from which type of people they must be especially protected. Homophobia has also been stated to be the real cause of AIDS Such fears may explain the perception that "the nuclear family is a microcosm of the fascist state...",  and similar attacks on heteronormativity. It has also been stated by preeminent pro homosexual psychotherapist, John J. McNeill, that "Interiorized self-hatred is the sin of gay people, and we must learn to see it that way."
Violence against gays
In 1990, Congress passed the Hate Crime Statistics Act, which required the Attorney General to collect data about crimes that manifest evidence of prejudice based on race, religion, sexual orientation, or ethnicity/national origin. In 1994, lawmakers amended the Hate Crime Statistics Act to include bias against persons with disabilities. 
In 2005, law enforcement agencies reported 1,171 hate crime offenses based on sexual-orientation bias, 348 of which are property crimes which includes theft and graffiti.  While the FBI reports statistics by victim class or bias motivation, race, religion, sexual orientation and disability, the FBI does not report the sexual orientation of known offenders. Thus a conclusion that all offenders are heterosexual is faulty, and the methodology does not measure gay-on-gay violence. In all of 2004, there was 1 anti-homosexual murder in the United States, and the FBI has reported none since.  Of greater concern among many is the higher risk and more frequent incidence of domestic abuse in same sex partnerships than among the heterosexual population,
While 818 bias motivated crimes of persons against gays were reported nationwide in 2004, an earlier study found 5046 incidences of homosexual domestic violence in only nine cities, all of which are crimes of persons. The subject of homosexual domestic violence has not been researched with anything near the thoroughness afforded to heterosexual domestic violence. However the uniformity of conclusions based upon varying sample sizes all point to a prevalence ranging from 20%-35% of homosexual domestic partnerships.
- 'Brokeback Mountain': Rape of the Marlboro Man, December 27, 2005
- pro homosexual author Vernon A Wall
- Plummer, David, One of the Boys: Masculinity, Homophobia, and Modern Manhood, pp. 3-4: "'Homophobia was introduced into the clinical literature by George Weinberg in 1972, in Society and the Healthy Homosexual.
- Gregory M. Herek, Ph.D., published Beyond 'Homophobia': Thinking About Sexual Prejudice and Stigma in the Twenty-First Century, in the April, 2004, issue of Sexuality Research & Social Policy.
- William O'Donohue and Christine E. Caselles, Homophobia: Conceptual, definitional, and value issues, Journal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment, Volume 15, Number 3, Springer Netherlands, September, 1993. ISSN 0882-2689
- No fear factor in 'homophobia,' by Keith Taylor, The Washington Blade
- Gay Psychologist Creates New Terms for Use in the Social Debate
- NARTH Position Statements
- AP Style Book Ends Use of Smear Term ‘Homophobia’ in Political and Social Contexts
- Clinical Issues: Grief Work, Interview: Joseph Nicolosi, Ph.D.
- Psychologists do not recognize it as a phobia in any generally recognized publication like the DSM IV.
- E.g., this site  first defines homophobia as a dread or fear, but says that it includes those who write their Congressmen to oppose same-sex marriage.
- HOMOPHOBIA: A Scientific Non-Political Definition, Dr. Sander J. Breiner, National Association for Research and Therapy on Homosexuality, 2003.
- Specific Phobia DSM-IV Criteria
- 2 Timothy 1:7
- Psychology Losing Scientific Credibility, Say APA Insiders 
- http://www.leaderu.com/socialsciences/sellinghomosexuality.html http://www.article8.org/docs/gay_strategies/after_the_ball.htm
- After the Ball: How America Will Conquer Its Fear and Hatred of Gays in the 90’s, p. 152-153 (1989, Doubleday/Bantam)
- The Gentleman from Maryland: The Conscience of a gay Conservative, by Robert Bauman, 1986, page 163.
- Brazilian Government Says 99% of Citizens Are "Homophobic" and Must Be Reeducated http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2009/feb/09021301.html
- Homosexuality, by F. Earle Fox, David W. Virtue, p. 12
- "An essay on the origin and nature of homophobia," Scott Bidstrup (prohomosex activist)
- Socarides, A Freedom Too Far, 1995
- Federal Bureau of Investigation Uniform Crime Reporting Program, Hate Crime Statistics 2005: About Hate Crime
- U.S. Department of Justice — Federal Bureau of Investigation, Uniform Crime Reports, Offense Type by Bias Motivation, 2005 Table 4.
- U.S. Department of Justice — Federal Bureau of Investigation, Uniform Crime Reports, Offense Type by Bias Motivation, 2004 Table 4.
- Comparing the Lifestyles of Homosexual Couples to Married Couples
- Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Domestic Violence in 2001, National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs, 2002.