As the trial began, Jeffs stared into space as the prosecutor gave his opening statement, and Jeffs declined to give his own opening statement. He remained seated and mute as the prosecution then moved ahead with presenting its case. Finally today, according to AP, Jeffs broke his silence and launched into a 55-minute sermon, saying in part:
We cannot surrender these principles based on the laws of man trying to convince us that our religion is not necessary in practice... [T]his must stop in a land of freedom if all others are to receive a similar guarantee against their freedom of religion being trampled.... We are not a fly-by-night religious society . . . We are a community of faith and principles and those principles are so sacred.... [Polygamy] is not of a sudden happening, it is of a tradition in our lives. And how can we just throw it away and say "God has not spoken?"