The problem with the word ‘Islamist’ is that it actually doesn’t mean anything.

Post 7/7 there was a large body of research and in many ways soul-searching done to look at how we can describe those Muslims who are ‘a little more extreme’ than the others.

With the ongoing threats from violent extremism based on Islamic viewpoints we needed a new way to describe those whose ideas went against the British way of life.

It was not correct to call them Islamic fundamentalists anymore and we could also not call them Muslim fundamentalists.

Both of these terms were now dated and to use them meant we were blaming a whole religion for the actions of a few. You had to find a way to describe extremism but not make it seem as if it was inspired by ones religious beliefs.

Or so it seemed.

‘Islamist’ is not a new modern term, but its use has become common place. It is now used quite regularly to describe those Muslims we must fear. Whilst Islam is an ideology, Islamism is the belief in an extreme ideology which we must challenge.

Islamist's want to impose Islam on the democratic societies through stealth means.  This underhand way of imposing Islamic beliefs is something only Islamists are guilty of it seems.

But the line between achieving this through peaceful means and through violent means is now so blurred. So why not band them together as ‘Islamists?’ It is easy and everyone now understands the difference.

In a short period of time we have managed to encourage the use for the term and describes anyone we don’t agree with.

The problem as I mentioned is that as soon as you use the word ‘Islamist’ at any Muslim gathering or in any literature you are immediately seen to be someone who is not a true Muslim.

I challenge anyone to claim otherwise.

The word ‘Islamist’ is used by those who openly support the Government programme of Prevent or by right-wing think tanks. It is used on social media forums by Muslim and non-Muslim extremism ‘experts’ who want us to believe they know something we don’t.

I have yet to see it uttered by other Muslim organisations who claim to represent the ‘true Muslims’ of the UK.

You won’t hear it because they don’t think it is necessary. Or more likely, they refuse to use it because to do so would mean they are pandering to the same viewpoints as the ‘other Muslims’ they clearly despise.

And whilst we are at it ditch secular Muslims too...

Which brings me on to the other term which is now quite regularly used in quote marks. Why it is used in quote marks on Muslim websites and by Muslims is beyond me?

But it is now used to describe the apparent sell-outs. And that term is secular Muslims.

What makes a secular Muslim? Is he or she the one who isn’t practicing but claims to speak on behalf of Muslims? Is it someone who has views which go against the fundamentals of Islam? Is it someone who says it is wrong to stone a homosexual? Or the one's who say women should have more say in mosques?

The list goes on.

The true Muslims will describe the others - and yes this is clearly an ‘us and them’ thing now- as secular Muslims, claiming these Muslims are Muslim by name but aren’t actually ‘real’ Muslims like the rest of us.

In the midst of all this we have the ‘mainstream Muslims.’ Yes, those people who do wish to be part of any group and are the ever reliable individuals we can go to when we want to launch another campaign or support our political party.

This apparent use of terms to describe differing thought processes is becoming more and more commonplace. And it is defining individuals and any debate is being supressed.

Now, this might well be done on purpose to ensure to ensure there is no way those of opposing groups can sit down and discuss issues that are relevant to the myriad of Muslims that live in the UK.

We are fast becoming insistent of using these terms to ensure we are able to reach our respective audiences. And by doing so, we are completely alienating whole groups of people.