'Make no mistake, Alex Jones won': Megyn Kelly finds the limits of shining a light
The conspiracy theorist talk show host sat down with the former Fox News host in another early controversy for her new show at NBC.
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The Show: Sunday Night with Megyn Kelly, June 18 (NBC)
The Moment: The Sandy Hook questions
Alex Jones broadcasts to millions of listeners daily via his radio show and website, Infowars. Host Megyn Kelly asks him about his repeated assertions that the slaughter of children at Sandy Hook Elementary School was a hoax.
“I was going as devil’s advocate,” Jones says, ungrammatically.
Kelly [holding head in hands]: “But Alex, the devastated parents, the dead bodies that the coroner autopsied.”
Jones: “They won’t release any of that, that’s unprecedented.”
Kelly: “Parents decided to come out and lie about their dead children?”
Jones: “I looked at all the angles of Newtown, and I made my statements long before the media picked up on it.”
She presses him more. Finally he says, “I tend to believe that children probably did die there.” Immediately followed by, “But I can see how other people believe that nobody died there.”
Newtown parents asked Kelly not to air this segment. Advertisers pulled out. Kelly argued that it was her journalistic duty to “shine a light” on Jones, since he has the ear of Donald Trump. She also has a new show to promote, and a formidable competitor in 60 Minutes.
She got her ratings. She didn’t go easy on him. And I agree, journalists have a duty to pursue the truth.
But make no mistake, Jones won here. You can’t debunk someone who’s rewarded for lying. You can’t expose someone as a hate-mongerer and a truth-perverter if those are the very things people listen to him for. You can’t shine a light on a black hole.