Reporter's Background Perspective By Bill Osmulski
***WARNING - GRAPHIC LANGUAGE - WARNING***
Miles Kristan is not a fan of the MacIver Institute. Kristan has made a name for himself during the protests in Madison this year by harassing and intimidating conservative individuals.
Most recently, he made news after he poured a beer over Representative Robin Vos’s head at the Inn on the Park last week. Police gave him a disorderly conduct citation to add to his stack.
During the budget debate in June, Kristan, who was wearing a pink dress at the time, spotted a MacIver Intern with a flip cam outside the Capitol. Kristan tried to block the camera’s lens, while calling out to his fellow protesters and shouting at the intern.
“You are called out boy! Called out!” he shouted. “You’re a soulless little prick!”
While he chased and shoved the intern around the Capitol Square, he explained his problem with MacIver.
“You’ve been filming protesters to intimidate them and put out slanderous, fucking videos,” he yelled. “We know exactly what your institute does.”
About two months later, Kristan spotted me with a camera during a protest in Janesville outside Congressman Paul Ryan’s district office. He spent the next half-hour trying to block my lens with a bunch of helium balloons. At first, he was reluctant to tell me why he was so interested in me and my camera.
“You know, if you were credentialed media, maybe I would talk to you,” he said.
Kristan was not able to keep up the silent treatment for long and began presenting me with a random assortment of ideas.
“It’s sad that you think these people are actually conservative,” he stated.
I asked if he was referring to Congressman Ryan.
“What’s he conserving?” Kristan responded.
It wasn’t long before he started laying out what his grievances were against me.
“Do you know your videos actually put other people’s safety at jeopardy?” he asked me.
This troubled me, and, after some prodding, I was finally able to get him to explain that charge.
“When they have a rally, they want to be about to speak. They don’t want some fucking psycho knowing their name and what they look like,” he said.
It was difficult to hear him, because one of his colleagues was banging a drum and blowing a kazoo in my ear.
“You’re not helping,” he told me.
I explained that’s not what a journalist is supposed to do. It’s to tell people what’s going on.
“And you’re not the person to do that,” he said. “The videos you put out have been slanderous and lies.”
I pointed out that no one had ever been able to identify a lie in any of my videos.
“That’s because only like 12 people have watched them,” he said.
Currently, over 1.7 million people have viewed my stories on youtube.
During this time I was continually repositioning my camera to acquire shots not blocked by Kristan’s balloons.
“You’re a shrill of a journalist,” he announced in his megaphone. “When you start covering stories like a big kid, you can get the coverage you want.”
For the record, Kristan is 26 years old.