Online Insanity Fails Again In The Courtroom

Turns out yelling into a megaphone doesn’t make something true.

People believe all kinds of crazy things. Some are crazier than others, some are benevolent, some are much darker.

For example, when I worked at a private weather company as a communications person, I learned that a shockingly large number of people believe completely wrong things about weather that include meteorologists being in cahoots with Big Grocery to overhype snow, the weather forecasters are always wrong, rodents can out-forecast humans, and various beliefs that are not things (and are sort of dangerous) such as tornadoes can’t hit cities and that hot weather can produce nocturnal lighting (no, heat lightning is not a thing, you are seeing distant thunderstorms). Like so many things that people believe that are just not true, if you put them on trial in a courtroom where you had to prove that they are real using actual evidence, they would fail spectacularly.

That leads me to Perennial Finalist for Worst Human of the Year, Alex Jones. As you may have heard, Alex had a very bad day yesterday in his civil trial where the Sandy Hook parents are suing him for his awful, horrible rants that Sandy Hook was some sort of false flag operation. Our Blog Leader Adrastos has a very good piece on that entire mess, including how Jones is such a prolific liar, he lied to the judge about chewing gum like he’s a second grader who got caught chomping on Bubble Yum by his teacher.

Someone needs to tell the writer of this show their main villain is too cartoonishly evil.

His central lie, the reason why he is on trial, is that the horrific Sandy Hook shooting was staged and never happened. Well, on the witness stand, he said this about it:

“It’s 100% real.”

Funny how the threat of perjury brings out the truth.

That Sandy Hook was some kind of false flag operation to enable the confiscating of guns owned by Real Americans was a key part of his Infowars media empire. His fans, a sad, pathetic lot, ate up every word, thrilled to hear someone as sick as they are saying what they had been thinking. Cruel lies like these have made Jones a lot of money.

But the problem for Jones is he had to put those beliefs on trial, in a courtroom. He of course did not try to prove those beliefs were real because he was in a situation where he could not possibly do that, and when he tried to throw up the usual smokescreens that conservatives like him use online, Judge Maya Guerra Gamble told him:

“This is not your show. Your beliefs do not make something true. You are under oath.”

When I read that, I could barely restrain myself from yelling “AMEN” at my computer screen. This is not just relevant to Jones, but to so many others.

Remember the conspiracy that Hillary Clinton was running a child trafficking ring in the basement of a pizza parlor? Remember this guy? Yet another example of a person who believed something crazy who was in a “put up or shut up” situation in court about their beliefs. That did not work out well for him.

I actually believe that a lot of people deeply hate thinking in a rational, reason-based way. I have a simple comeback when someone yells at me when I am driving or walking and it’s obvious that I’m in the right and they are in the wrong as far as traffic laws (which is not always the case, to be sure!).

“What could you possibly be trying to argue?”

This stops them in their tracks, because they are expecting me to just yell back that they are a jerk or to go to hell or whatever. They do not expect getting a demand to face up to what they are claiming. People stammer, flip me off, and in general, just don’t know what to do. An example is an intersection in my home area where there is a three-way stop, but one direction has no stop sign given it is in a shopping area. A few months ago, I was going through it and a woman who stopped and then proceeded because she expected me to stop as well had to slam on the brakes. She screamed “you idiot” and I said “what could you possibly be trying to argue?” Her reply was “you ran a stop sign” to which I replied “point out the stop sign to me.” She looked, saw no stop sign, and gave me a hearty “GO TO HELL.”

The point is, all of us have ideas that we assume are true that would not hold up in court, in a situation where the facts matter the most. A situation where you can’t just yell at someone that they are an idiot, or create any other distraction, but where you have to test the idea on its merits.

For most things, our ideas are harmless. You might believe for example that brown recluse spider bites are common (they aren’t), sharks can’t get cancer, or any of a number of popular myths. But conspiracies have a darker side, as we have seen with the Stop the Steal, Pizzagate, and the various COVID myths. They can drive average people to attack the U.S. Capitol Building, take horse medicine, and show up at a pizza parlor gun in hand to take out a non-existent child trafficking ring while terrifying innocent people.

Jones is a big source of these sorts of malevolent myths. He and his followers deeply believe a lot of dangerous nonsense that they defend through bluster, lies, and threats. None of that was effective in the courtroom during his trial.

I wish that I could say this is giving his fans some pause, some time to reflect and realize how wrong they were. But for most of them, it will not. They will view this as yet more proof of conspiracy, that the powers that be forced him to say Sandy Hook was real. I also fear that it will drive some of them to at least plan violence, so I really hope the right people are paying attention (including heightened security for the judge).

Because quite often, when a person has their beliefs torn apart by reality, this is not something they are used to, so they dig in. Unfortunately for Jones and fortunately for basic decency, digging in will not help Jones avoid a big lawsuit that hopefully ruins him. Because reality and the facts are not on his side.

The last word goes to The Pretenders.