Gay: Homophobia

What is homophobia anyway? Here are some definitions I found:

1. Aversion to gay or homosexual people or their lifestyle or culture.
2. Behavior or an act based on this aversion.
(The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 3rd ed., 1992)
Irrational fear of, aversion to, or discrimination against homosexuality or homosexuals.
(Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary, 10th ed., 1993)
n. 1. unreasoning fear of or antipathy toward homosexuals and homosexuality. [1955-60; HOMO (SEXUAL) + - PHOBIA] Derived words --ho'mo-phobe, n.; ho mo-pho'bic, adj.
(Random House/Webster's Online Dictionary, Version 1 for Windows, 1992.)

Homophobia is odd because it is based on views that are easily debunked, and which rely on strangely distorted view of ordinary gay folks.

There are some interesting studies on the roots of homophobia and the links between self-esteem and violence.

Homophobia is so commonplace it often goes unnoticed, but examples such as homophobic Usenet tirades, the unabashed homophobia of Orson Scott Card, and organized hate groups abound. I've collected some other examples of homophobia in action including the condemnation of a gay music teacher, the villification of a straight janitor who made a faggy remark, a San Diego city worker calling a gay man a white faggot, and the contempt for law in the American military.

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