Indigenous leaders say Australia — s bushfire crisis shows approach to land management failing — ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)
Indigenous leaders say Australia’s bushfire crisis shows approach to land management failing
- 1 Indigenous leaders say Australia’s bushfire crisis shows approach to land management failing
- 2 Key points:
- 3 Fear of fire at the heart of ‘mismanagement’
- 4 New sector to draw on ancient methods
- 5 What do Indigenous fire practices involve?
- 6 How to Make Chemical Fire Without Matches or a Lighter
- 7 Chemical Fire #1
- 8 Chemical Fire #2
- 9 Chemical Fire #3
- 10 Chemical Fire #4
- 11 Chemical Fire Safety
- 12 Fire & Emergency Procedure
- 13 Raising the alarm
- 14 Evacuation procedure
- 15 Fire precautions
- 16 Wildfire safety tips
- 17 Wildfires are often preventable, because many originate from human error.
- 18 Wildfire safety tips
- 19 Wildfires are often preventable, because many originate from human error.
- 20 How to prevent a wildfire
- 21 Evacuation tips
- 22 9 Keys to Handling Hostile and Confrontational People
- 23 How to handle hostile and confrontational people.
Updated November 14, 2019 18:51:42
Indigenous leaders, who have been warning about a bushfire crisis for years, are calling for a radical change to how land is managed as Australia faces some of its worst bushfire conditions on record.
- Indigenous leaders are calling for a new workforce of ‘fire practitioners’ to implement traditional burning practices across Australia
- Traditional burning techniques involve regular, controlled burns that reduce fuel load and decrease risk of bushfires
- Researchers say burning methods that date back thousands of years must be adapted to today’s landscape
When Indigenous fire practitioner Victor Steffensen walked outside his house in far north Queensland this week he felt a sense of dread.
«I look into the sky and I see the misty haze coming up from down south all through the landscape,» he said.
«You can see the ashes on the air, landing on the trees up here and it’s like a mourning for the country.
«When we walk outside and we get that sort of feeling … we know something is wrong.»
A year ago, while conducting workshops in southern Queensland and northern New South Wales, Mr Steffensen predicted the crisis that has now killed three people and destroyed at least 25 homes.
«I was looking at it and thinking ‘this is a timebomb, it’s going to go off’,» he said.
Fear of fire at the heart of ‘mismanagement’
Mr Steffensen has been teaching traditional Indigenous burning practices for the past two decades.
He said this week’s bushfire crisis sent a clear message to politicians that current land management practices are not working.
«We can’t keep doing this,» he said.
«It’s really frustrating to see country get torched like that when you know they’re not doing anything about it.»
Mr Steffensen said the dangerous conditions resulted from a build up of fuel loads and decades of mismanagement.
«People are too scared to burn because of how dry it is,» he said.
«There are grasses that are up to the roof and landscapes that have no vegetation except for large amounts of rubbish.
«The bottom line is that we need to start looking after the landscape.»
New sector to draw on ancient methods
Mr Steffensen called on the State and Federal Governments to establish a new workforce dedicated to managing land and fuel loads through the use of traditional ecological knowledge.
«We need a whole other division of people out there looking after the land,» he said.
«People need to be on country. Looking after the land is a full time job, not a seasonal job.
«A fire practitioner of the future is going to be full time.»
Mr Steffensen said the new sector could employ Indigenous and non-Indigenous people and exist in conjunction with emergency fire services.
«We need our firefighters, we praise our firefighters that help those communities and they’re needed into the future,» he said.
«But we also need the land managers, we can’t just throw it all on the weight of one department»
University of Tasmania professor of fire science David Bowman said Indigenous fire practices could play an important role in land management systems of the future, but they would need to be adapted to suit the current times.
«So many changes have occurred since 1975 … but we can take that knowledge and we can adapt it to suit our times,» he said.
«The key message is that we can take the idea of humans using fire skilfully — we can manipulate vegetation, we can reduce fuel loads, we can sharpen fire boundaries.»
What do Indigenous fire practices involve?
Mr Steffensen said burning was crucial way that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders cared for the land.
He said it involved learning to read trees, soil types, wind conditions and developing an «intimate» relationship with the landscape.
«It’s like a doctor. You’re there at the country to look at a specific ecosystem,» Mr Steffensen said.
«It’s a whole complex system. I’m not saying that it’s all easy.
«But what I am saying is that if they were all trained and we had a lot more of those practitioners out there we would find that we can burn a lot more country.»
He said incorporating traditional burning practices into mainstream systems would result in more regular burning and reduced fuel loads.
Mr Steffensen said it also involved changing attitudes towards fire.
«This is a really sensitive issue,» he said.
«For those who have gone through a trauma through these fires, it is very sensitive. I want to really acknowledge that. But at the end of the day I don’t see fear — I see an opportunity.
«I see an opportunity for people to see hope, to have workshops to go to, to see smoke and know that it’s a good fire that people are out on the land doing something about it.»
How to Make Chemical Fire Without Matches or a Lighter
- Ph.D., Biomedical Sciences, University of Tennessee at Knoxville
- B.A., Physics and Mathematics, Hastings College
No matches or lighter are needed to start a fire. Here are four ways to make one using chemical reactions. Each of these techniques is simple and requires only three chemicals each.
Chemical Fire #1
- Potassium permanganate
Add a few drops of glycerin to a few crystals of potassium permanganate. Accelerate the reaction by adding a couple of drops of water.
Chemical Fire #2
- Sulfuric acid
- Potassium permanganate
Soak a tissue with acetone to make it more flammable. Next, draw sulfuric acid into a glass pipette. Dip the pipette into potassium permanganate so that the tip of the pipette is coated with a few crystals. Dispense the sulfuric acid onto the tissue. The potassium permanganate and sulfuric acid will mix to produce manganese heptoxide and fire.
Chemical Fire #3
- Sodium chlorate
- Sulfuric acid
Mix a small amount of sodium chlorate and sugar. Initiate the reaction by adding a few drops of sulfuric acid.
Chemical Fire #4
- Ammonium nitrate powder
- Finely ground zinc powder
- Hydrochloric acid
Mix together a small amount of ammonium nitrate and zinc powder. Initiate the reaction by adding a few drops of hydrochloric acid.
Chemical Fire Safety
If you are performing a demonstration of chemical fire using any of these reactions, use very small amounts of the chemicals listed for each project. Wear proper safety gear and work on a fire-safe surface.
Disclaimer: Please be advised that the content provided by our website is for EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY. Fireworks and the chemicals contained within them are dangerous and should always be handled with care and used with common sense. By using this website you acknowledge that ThoughtCo., its parent About, Inc. (a/k/a Dotdash), and IAC/InterActive Corp. shall have no liability for any damages, injuries, or other legal matters caused by your use of fireworks or the knowledge or application of the information on this website. The providers of this content specifically do not condone using fireworks for disruptive, unsafe, illegal, or destructive purposes. You are responsible for following all applicable laws before using or applying the information provided on this website.
Fire & Emergency Procedure
Raising the alarm
On discovering a fire, raise the alarm by shouting FIRE! (to alert anyone in the immediate vicinity) and then activate the nearest push-glass fire alarm call-point (small red box, close to major exits).
If safe to do so, use an appropriate fire extinguisher to tackle the fire, but only if your exit is clear.
Leave the building by the nearest exit.
Call the Fire & Rescue Service on 999 and state location as the Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge, Trumpington Street, Cambridge.
Report location of fire (room number) to the Fire Safety Manager attending the Fire System Panel in the Reception Foyer or to the Fire Marshal at your Assembly Point.
If the site requires evacuation for any other reason (e.g. bomb threat), the Head of Department, Departmental Secretary or Departmental Safety Officer will authorise the activation of the alarm via a fire panel.
On hearing a continuous siren, leave the building immediately by the nearest exit. Escort any visitors/contractors from the building.
If an intermittent alarm is heard, there is a fire alert that requires investigation. Be prepared to leave if this becomes a continuous siren.
Report to the appropriate Assembly Point.
James Dyson Building, JDB Link and Reception Foyer
Remainder of Baker Building and Inglis Building
Dept of Architecture car park (opposite Reception)
or as directed by the Fire Service
Report missing persons or those in difficulty to the Fire Safety Manager or assembly point Fire Marshal for relaying to the Fire and Rescue Service on arrival.
On hearing the alarm, the Fire Safety Manager or deputy will attend the fire system panel to identify the location of the alert.
The first Fire Marshal to arrive at Reception will act as the Co-ordinator for the incident. They will issue radios and fluorescent vests to the next attending Fire Marshals in the following order.
- Fire location marshal – to be sent to identify source using information from Fire Panel, if safe to do so .
- Coe Fen assembly point.
- Main Gate – to prevent access to the site and direct any attending emergency services.
- Centre Roadway – to keep evacuating personnel moving towards assembly points and to direct emergency services if required. Stay at North Roadway junction/Courtyard end until evacuation complete.
- Main Drive/Reception junction — to keep evacuating personnel moving towards assembly points and to direct emergency services if required. Direct personnel to the Fen Causeway entry to the Assembly Point
Additional Fire Marshals attending can be directed to:
- Centre Roadway/Fen Causeway junction — to keep evacuating personnel moving towards assembly points and to direct emergency services if required.
- West Roadway/Fen Causeway junction — to keep evacuating personnel moving towards assembly points, to direct emergency services and assist Coe Fen Assembly Point Marshal if required.
Coe Fen Fire Marshals (two in number) will attend the assembly point directly from the Inglis Building.
Any remaining Fire Marshals to be deployed as necessary to ensure buildings and roadways are clear before the arrival of emergency services and to prevent entry or re-entry to buildings before an official ‘all clear’ by the emergency services or Fire Safety Manager.
The Department uses Fire Wardens to assist in the evacuation during an emergency. Fire Wardens are expected to be familiar with the area they are responsible for clearing, including all escape routes. Fire Wardens are given enhanced fire safety training, including the use of fire extinguishers.
On hearing an intermittent fire alarm signal, Fire Wardens should be prepared to leave the building, identifying the whereabouts of those at greater risk (visitors, contractors, persons with limited mobility) and ensuring they are ready to evacuate.
On hearing the continuous signal Fire Wardens should:
- put on a Fire Team ‘high-vis’ jacket
- take red card detailing their designated area and check all rooms are clear
- direct occupants to the appropriate assembly point
- close doors and windows and switch off any heat generating equipment, if safe to do so
- proceed to the assembly point and report to the Assembly Point Marshal, reporting the location of any individual(s) requiring assistance
- where appropriate, assist in managing the flow of evacuees to the assembly point and prevent re-entry to the building until given the all clear by the Fire Safety Manager
Lecturers are responsible for ensuring a Lecture Theatre or Meeting Room is cleared and the red card for that room shown to the Assembly Point Marshal.
The Department will ensure that adequate fire precautions are in place throughout areas under its control. This will be achieved by:
- assessing the fire risks in the workplace
- ensuring that a fire can be detected in a reasonable time and that people can be warned
- ensuring that people who may be in the Department can get out safely
- providing appropriate fire-fighting equipment
- ensuring that those in the Department know what to do if there is a fire
- ensuring that fire safety equipment is checked and maintained
If a fire occurs in the workplace, there is a risk that people will be trapped by the fire or injured as they attempt to escape. The purpose of the risk assessment is to identify where fires may start in the workplace and anyone who may be put at risk from that fire.
The University Fire Safety Unit will periodically tour the Department and will produce a Building specific risk assessment. Additional risk assessments should be undertaken as follows.
Fire Wardens should use a Fire Safety Checklist for the risk assessment of areas under their control (obtainable from the Departmental Safety Officer). The DSO will assess escape routes and higher risks areas regularly.
Risk assessments for experiments or projects involving flammable, explosive or pyrophoric materials or substances, heat sources, high voltages or processes that may interfere with smoke or heat sensors should include specific reference to these together with the control measures employed to eliminate or reduce those risks to acceptable levels.
All staff, students and visiting scientists must ensure that:
- combustible materials are used and stored safely
- materials are not stored in gangways, corridors or stairways or where they may obstruct exit doors.
Smoking is not permitted on any Department site (or in close proximity to external stores, entrances and exits) except in designated smoking areas.
Maintenance and refurbishment
All building maintenance and refurbishment work and equipment maintenance requiring sources of heat or combustible materials must be cleared for use with the Facilities Manager. Contractor access to the Department must be authorised by the Facilities Manager.
All materials brought into the Department in connection with the work being carried out must be stored away from sources of heat and must not obstruct exit routes.
The Department has an emergency plan. This plan includes:
- the action to be taken by staff in the event of fire
- the evacuation procedure
- the arrangements for calling the fire brigade
- the location of assembly points
The plan is posted in prominent positions where staff can become familiar with it. More detailed plans are available in areas identified as being at higher risk from fire.
Training and instruction
Department staff, students and visitors must be aware of the risks of fire associated with their work, particularly if they work with hot processes or use highly flammable substances. All staff will be told during their induction process:
- how to warn others of the fire including the operation of the fire-warning system
- the location and use of escape routes
- to assist or direct visitors or members of the public from the workplace
- the location of assembly points
- how to summon the fire service
- the location and use of fire safety equiment (where appropriate)
- the arrangements for calling the fire brigade
All Departmental staff will undergo periodic fire safety training, including an annual evacuation procedure.
Maintenance and testing of fire safety equipment
The Fire Safety Manager will ensure that fire safety equipment, including fire-fighting equipment, detection and warning systems, means of escape and emergency lighting, are regularly checked and maintained. The schedule detailed in Appendix 1 will be followed.
Fire safety equipment maintenance and service schedule
Fire-detection and fire-warning systems
- Alarm sounder check.
- Confirm any system isolations are still required.
Every Six Months
- A full check and test of systems will be performed by a competent service engineer.
- Operate torches and replace batteries as required.
- Repair or replace any defective unit.
- A full check and test of systems and units will be carried out by a competent service engineer.
- Replace torch batteries.
- Replace any extinguishers that have been moved from an appropriate location.
- Replace damaged and deployed extinguishers.
- A full check and test will be carried out by a competent service engineer.
Manufacturers may recommend alternative or additional action where appropriate and will supply more detailed information as required.
Wildfire safety tips
Wildfires are often preventable, because many originate from human error.
Wildfire safety tips
Wildfires are often preventable, because many originate from human error.
Unlike many natural disasters, most wildfires are caused by peopleвЂ”and can be prevented by people, too. Meteorologists are not yet able to forecast wildfire outbreaks, so people in fire-prone areas should plan ahead and prepare to evacuate with little notice. Here are some tips on how to prevent wildfires and what to do if you’re caught in the middle of one.
How to prevent a wildfire
- Contact 911, your local fire department, or the park service if you notice an unattended or out-of-control fire.
- Never leave a fire unattended. Completely extinguish the fireвЂ”by dousing it with water and stirring the ashes until coldвЂ”before sleeping or leaving the campsite.
- Always take care when using and fueling lanterns, stoves, and heaters. Make sure lighting and heating devices are cool before refueling. Avoid spilling flammable liquids and store fuel away from appliances.
- Do not discard cigarettes, matches, and smoking materials from moving vehicles, or anywhere on park grounds. Be certain to completely extinguish cigarettes before disposing of them.
- Follow local ordinances when burning yard waste. Avoid backyard burning in windy conditions, and keep a shovel, water, and fire retardant nearby to keep fires in check. Remove all flammables from the yard when burning.
- If advised to evacuate, do so immediately.
- Know your evacuation route ahead of time and prepare an evacuation checklist and emergency supplies.
- Wear protective clothing and footwear to reduce harm from flying sparks and ashes. (Get more wildfire safety information.)
Hotshot crews face the Jocko Lakes fire near Seeley, Montana. These elite on-the-ground firefighting teams are highly trained in wildfire suppression.
Photograph by Mark Thiessen, National Geographic
9 Keys to Handling Hostile and Confrontational People
How to handle hostile and confrontational people.
Posted Oct 18, 2015
“Some people try to be tall by cutting off the heads of others.”
Most of us encounter confrontational and hostile people at some points in our lives. These individuals may exist in our personal sphere or professional environment. On the surface, they may come across as domineering, demanding, or even abusive. However, with astute approach and assertive communication, you may turn aggression into cooperation, and coercion into respect.
Reasons for unwarranted confrontational and hostile behavior are many and often complex. Causes may include and are not limited to pathological anger, hyper-aggression, pathological bullying, narcissistic rage, post-traumatic stress disorder, brain trauma, substance abuse, and life crisis. In some cases it’s just a normal person having a bad day. In others you may be dealing with a sociopath or psychopath.
Regardless of the reason, it’s important to respond proactively and effectively when your rights, interests and safety are at stake. Below are nine keys to dealing with confrontational and hostile people, with excerpts from my book (click on title): “How to Successfully Handle Aggressive, Intimidating, and Controlling People”. Not all of these ideas may apply to your particular situation. Simply utilize what works and leave the rest.
1. Keep Safe
The most important priority in the face of a confrontational and hostile individual is to protect yourself. If you don’t feel comfortable with a situation, leave. Seek help and support if necessary. Contact law enforcement if you have to. Should you decide to deal with the aggressor, consider the following skills and strategies.
2. Keep Your Distance and Keep Your Options Open
Not all confrontational and hostile individuals are worth tasseling with. Your time is valuable, and your happiness and well-being important. Unless there’s something important at stake, don’t expend yourself by trying to grapple with a person who’s negatively entrenched. Whether you’re dealing with an angry driver, a pushy relative, or a domineering supervisor, keep a healthy distance, and avoid engagement unless you absolutely have to.
There are times when you may feel like you’re “stuck” with a very difficult person, and there’s “no way out.” In these situations, think outside the box. Consult with trusted friends and advisors about different courses of action, with your personal well-being as the number one priority. We’re never stuck unless we have blinders on. Keep your options open.
3. Keep Your Cool and Avoid Escalation
One of the most common characteristics of confrontational and hostile individuals is that they project their aggression to push your buttons and keep you off balance. By doing so, they create an advantage from which they can exploit your weaknesses.
If you are required to deal with a difficult individual, one of the most important rules of thumb to keep your cool. The less reactive you are to provocations, the more you can use your better judgment to handle the situation.
When you feel upset with or challenged by someone, before you say or do something you might later regret, take a deep breath and count slowly to ten. In many instances, by the time you reach ten, you would have regained composure, and figured out a better response to the issue, so that you can reduce, instead of exacerbate the problem. If you’re still upset after counting to ten, take a time out if possible, and revisit the issue after you calm down. If necessary, use phrases such as “this is not a good time for me to talk…,” or “let’s deal with this after we cool off…” to buy yourself time. By maintaining self-control, you leverage more power to manage the situation.
4. Depersonalize and Shift from Reactive to Proactive
“Don’t take anything personally…What others say and do is a projection of their own reality…When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won’t be the victim of needless suffering.”
— Miguel Angel Ruiz
Being mindful about the nature of confrontational and hostile people can help us de-personalize the situation, and turn from being reactive to proactive.
One effective way to de-personalize is to put yourself in the other person’s shoes, even for just a moment. For example, consider the offender you’re dealing with, and complete the sentence: “It must not be easy…”
“My friend is so aggressive. It must not be easy to come from an environment where everyone was forced to compete…”
“My manager is really overbearing. It must not be easy to deal with his multiple issues at work and in personal life…”
“This customer representative is so rude. It must not be easy to harbor negative energy all day long…”
To be sure, empathetic statements do not excuse aggressive behavior. The point is to remind yourself that most chronically confrontational and hostile people suffer within, and mindfulness of their struggles can help you handle them with more detachment and equanimity.
5. Know Your Fundamental Human Rights
A crucial idea to keep in mind when you’re dealing with a difficult person is to know your rights, and recognize when they’re being violated.
As long as you do not harm others, you have the right to stand-up for yourself and defend your rights. On the other hand, if you bring harm to others, you may forfeit these rights. Following are some of our fundamental human rights:
You have the right to be treated with respect.
You have the right to express your feelings, opinions and wants.
You have the right to set your own priorities.
You have the right to say “no” without feeling guilty.
You have the right to get what you pay for.
You have the right to have opinions different than others.
You have the right to take care of and protect yourself from being threatened physically, mentally or emotionally.
You have the right to create your own happy and healthy life.
The Fundamental Human Rights are grounded in the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights, laws in many democratic nations protecting against abuse, exploitation, and fraud, and, if you’re in the United States, the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights.
These Fundamental Human Rights represent your boundaries.
Of course, our society is full of people who do not respect these rights. Confrontational and hostile individuals, in particular, want to deprive you of your rights so they can control and take advantage of you. But you have the power and moral authority to declare that it is you, not the offender, who’s in charge of your life. Focus on these rights, and allow them to keep your cause just and strong.
6. Utilize Assertive and Effective Communication
As mentioned above, avoid interacting with aggressors unless you absolutely have to. When you are required to deal with one, strengthen your position by utilizing assertive communication skills. In my book (click on title): “How to Successfully Handle Aggressive, Intimidating, and Controlling People”, you’ll learn eight ways to say “no” diplomatically but firmly, sixteen tips to reduce or eliminate aggressive behavior, and ten keys to successfully negotiate with highly difficult people.
7. Consider Intervention in Close Relationship
Oftentimes, an individual who is chronically confrontational and hostile simply isn’t being her or himself. As indicated earlier, any number of reasons including life crisis, brain trauma (from auto accident, head injury, sports injury, prescription drug side-effects, etc.), post-traumatic stress disorder, substance abuse, and other factors may significantly affect one’s mood and behavior. Medical and/or mental health support may be needed to halt the individual from relational ruin and self-destruction. If the person in question is someone close and important to you, ask whether he or she is open to receiving professional help. Should you encounter resistance, consider asking someone whom the aggressor holds in high regard to assist you in an intervention.
8. Stand Up to Bullies (Safely)
The most important thing to keep in mind about bullies is that they pick on those whom they perceive as weaker, so as long as you remain passive and compliant, you make yourself a target. Many bullies are also cowards on the inside. When their victims begin to show backbone and stand up for their rights, the bully will often back down. This is true in schoolyards, as well as in domestic and office environments.
On an empathetic note, studies show that many bullies are victims of violence themselves. This in no way excuses bullying behavior, but may help you consider the bully in a more equanimous light.
“When people don’t like themselves very much, they have to make up for it. The classic bully was actually a victim first.”
“I realized that bullying never has to do with you. It’s the bully who’s insecure.”
When standing up to bullies (in situations where something important is at stake), be sure to place yourself in a position where you can be safe, whether it’s standing tall on your own, having other people present to witness and support, or keeping a paper trail of the bully’s inappropriate behavior. In cases of physical, verbal, or emotional abuse, consult with counseling, legal, law enforcement, or administrative professionals on the matter. It’s very important to stand up to bullies, and you don’t have to do it alone.
9. Set Consequences to Compel Respect and Cooperation
When a confrontational and hostile individual insists on violating your boundaries, and won’t take “no” for an answer, deploy consequence.
The ability to identify and assert consequence(s) is one of the most important skills you can use to «stand down» a difficult person. Effectively articulated, consequence gives pause to the offending individual, and compels him or her to shift from violation to respect. In my book (click on title) “How to Successfully Handle Aggressive, Intimidating, & Controlling People”, consequence is presented as seven different types of power you can utilize to affect positive change.
In conclusion, to know how to handle confrontational and hostile people is to truly master the art of communication. As you utilize these skills, you may experience less grief, greater confidence, better relationships, and higher communication prowess. You are on your way to leadership success!
© 2015 by Preston C. Ni. All rights reserved worldwide. Copyright violation may subject the violator to legal prosecution.
Re. number 5, the trouble is
Re. number 5, the trouble is that confrontational people usually say you are harming them.
I believe it’s important to internalize the list of human rights to remain impeccable.
Piloting requires me to get ahold of the rudder. We’re already out at sea, and there’s a storm coming.
Successful interactions result as we learn to control the outcome of interactions before they reach the fightin’ stage by evoking our ‘charisma’/love.
A effective engagement scale is on one of the other articles which describes the process, ‘difficult people’ I believe.
(These articles are teasers to help us to consider the value of psychotherapy.
Reading articles like these
Reading articles like these always calm me down and give me a better perspective of the situation, especially when I have to see the person daily. Another helpful tip: Do not ask the person why they are aggressive towards you. Their answer is most likely illogical and you do not have to put yourself through comments that are simply not true or put yourself through unnecessary hate. Keeping a healthy distance is key.
«Not all confrontational and hostile individuals are worth TASSELING with.»
Do you mean hassling? The only definition of tassel as a verb is «to adorn with tassels.»
An otherwise excellent article.
My take is this:
Hostile person may not actually know or aware they are hostile.
Hostility is not always confrontational — passive aggressiveness is hostility wearing a hood.
hostile person probably — not excuse — but probably was an abused child who had learned how to identify with the aggressor
It is good to have known what hostility feels in order to fend it off but if you never ever felt one — it is hard to explain.
Hostility is an approach born out of living, growing in a fearful and threatening environment.
There were few options to get around to these people if they are close to you and you cannot leave them:
Empathy — you can learn to look beyond the words and the actions and try to see the need being expressed. BTW this is what you will eventually learn in therapy too.
or you can express your thoughts/feelings and leave the relationship, if you can.
What will not work, is to escalate them or try to outwit them in the hostile arena, you will not.
ps. i have had hostility, threatening, and fearful personality for a long time. I am a product of background that may be very similar to Stockholm syndrome for a long time — long physical and sexual abuse by a parent.
I always knew my organizing is hostile (suspicious and lowering other’s input/influence on me) but I ALWAYS choose not to act on my hostility so in essence, it did not impact work and great marriage but I managed it consciously without ever getting to the root of it. the thing is I have a lot of empathy for people so I could always tell others are intimidated or afraid and I would usually verbalize what I see to soothe the interaction. Like I would say something like, I know I can be frightening but I really do not mean it. Which was the truth that I did not know what to do about it. or I would say. I am sorry do you feel safe with me? I used language to detect my impact without knowing why.
Now I know how much hostility from my childhood I carry and it is like energy that enters the room before me. but I mitigated with language because I was conscious of it.
it is my relation to this that when I see others who are hostile, I can usually tell who is conscious and who is not. I approach with empathy both to see the person behind the prison of hostility and I often succeed. but this way of relating is not for the fainted heart.