What’s policy is prologue: IQ, The Police & #BlackLivesMatter

As a Canadian I am a keen observer of the US Election process but this election has been light on policy of any kind. As November 8th draws nearer, conservatives and liberals are pretty much throwing everything they can at each other and there is one study from 2012 that caught my eye.

Most of the press and meme’s about the study simplify it to be something like “Intelligence Study Links Low I.Q. To Prejudice, Racism, Conservatism” or “Conservative Ideas more common among LOW IQ individuals”. The name of the actual study was: “Bright Minds and Dark Attitudes: Lower Cognitive Ability Predicts Greater Prejudice Through Right-Wing Ideology and Low Intergroup Contact” by Gordon Hodson and Michael A. Busseri of Brock University. I will admit that my enjoyment of the articles is due to a certain amount of confirmation bias.

The recent postings of this article made me think of another series of articles that have made the rounds since Robert Jordan’s original case in 1999 where a Judge Ruled That Police Can Bar High I.Q. Scores. This led to police departments not hiring candidates who score well all over the US.

Keep in mind that we are not even talking about geniuses here… just good average people with a higher than average IQ.

Given the fact that in the 807 people have been shot by police in 2016 (so far, it’s only November), and 991 in 2015 one has to wonder if there is a link here.

If law enforcement in the US wasn’t systematically excluding intelligent candidates, to “avoid turnover”, would this have an effect on police culture either as a whole or in part?

I would argue yes as racial views may have been more undesirable in the departments and thus have been mitigated.