Criminals are flat-out evil. By definition.
No, that's not the definition of criminal.
It's no more sadistic to hate criminals than it is to hate homophobes, conservatives or Christians.
What if the homophobe lives in Iran? There, homosexuality is a crime, so according to you homosexuals must be evil, thus the homophobe is hating evil people which, again according to you, is okay.
For that matter, what about a state that has anti-sodomy laws in books but then removes them? Are all the homosexuals instantly de-evilized when the law is struck down? And what if an Iranian homosexual and an Iranian homophobe leave Iran and enter USA? The homosexual is no longer a criminal, thus not necessarily evil, thus the homophobes justifications fall flat.
My, it is a weird world authoritarians live in.