AUSTIN — Alex Jones’ cross examination in his 10-day custody trial began today with an unusual question:
“You haven’t had any chili this morning, have you, Mr. Jones?”
“Is that a serious question?” Jones shot back.
The question was in reference to Jones’ March 4th deposition, in which the 43 year-old radio and TV personality was unable to recall the names of his children's teachers after eating a big bowl of chili.
It’s just one of a series of surreal moments that have dominated the early days of Jones’ trial.
While the custody case is, at its core, about Jones’ three children, national media attention has been thrust onto the case over a defense laid out by Jones' lawyers in jury selection — that Alex Jones’ most offensive and provocative rants may be “performance art” or “political satire.”
But Thursday on the witness stand, Jones denied this and chastised the media — many of which were in attendance in the gallery — for their spin. He said he agreed with his lawyer’s statements “in general” but that “I disagree with the media’s interpretation of the term performance art.”
While on the stand Jones compared himself to Jon Oliver and Stephen Colbert, and pointed out frustratedly that Colbert accused him this week of being a performance artist and fraud.
Jones testified that Infowars — his company, which traffics in conspiracy theories, libertarian punditry, and some satirical skits — is “90% hard news.” At issue was whether Jones brought his work home with him into his family life. Jones testified that it does not: “I don’t even want to think about work when I get home. I just want to be with the kids, swim in the pool and eat hamburgers.”
During cross examination, Jones’ personal life was questioned aggressively by his wife Kelly Jones’ attorney. The subject of Jones’ alcohol and drug use came up.
Jones said he sometimes smokes marijuana — nearly yearly — “to monitor its strength, which is how law enforcement does it.” He then added that he tested it because he believes it is now too strong — a development he blamed on billionaire and political donor, George Soros who he claimed in court has “brain damaged a lot of people.”
Jones addressed his marijuana use last February on the popular Joe Rogan podcast, noting that it was legal in California where the show was taped and that “everybody smokes marijuana on that show.”
On the subject of alcohol use, Jones said his intake varies but that he is not intoxicated around children and rarely ever drunk. When shown a clip of him outside the Capitol building before inauguration looking intoxicated, Jones suggested he was not and that he does not get intoxicated on the set of his show. “Sometimes I’ll have a drink every day and then other times I’ll go without it for months,” he said.