By October 30, 2013 32 Comments Read More →

Police Officially Refuse To Hire Applicants With High IQ Scores

stupid cops 4

It’s long been rumored amongst law enforcement critics, but did you know that police departments officially disqualify high-scoring applicants? That’s not to say that all cops are stupid… Just that if you’re too smart, the police simply won’t hire you.

The policy became solidified as a concrete federal ruling almost a decade and a half ago with little fanfare from the mainstream media. Back in 1999, a Federal judge dismissed a lawsuit by a police applicant who was barred from the New London, Connecticut police force. The reason for the disqualification was literally because he had scored “too high” on an intelligence test. The department made it clear, they didn’t want the bottom of the barrel in terms of intelligence, but they didn’t want anyone “too smart” either.

The ruling made public in September of the same year, with the ruling  judge Peter C. Dorsey of the United States District Court in New Haven confirming that it was in fact the case that the plaintiff, Robert Jordan, 48, who has a bachelor’s degree in literature, was denied an opportunity to even interview for a job with the New London Police Department, solely because of his high test scores.

Judge Dorsey, however, ruled that Mr. Jordan that there was no protection offered to intelligent people from discriminatory hiring practices by individual police departments. Why? Because, Dorsey explained, it was proven that police departments held all to this same standard and thus rejected all applicants who scored high.

So next time you cross paths with a cop and wonder how someone so stupid could get hired by their department, you now know that their stupidity might be the very thing that qualified them for the job.

About the author: M.B. David is the author of several scholarly works on Middle Eastern politics, history and religion, such as People of the Book: What the Religions Named in the Qur’an Can Tell Us About the Earliest Understanding of “Islam” as well as the recently published Sci-Fi novel Sleeper Cell 2240: Memoires of the 21st Century Interplanetary Revolution. He is currently working on his doctorate, writing a dissertation focused on the non-profit Hashlamah Project Foundation and associated global study circles.

  • Kellie

    Don’t want the brute force machine to be able to think, they may question what those around them are doing to abuse their power.

  • http://wiseoldsnail.org wiseoldsnail

    exactly what kellie said . also, of course the corporate media didn’t pay attention to this ruling when it happened, but many of us have known about this for a very long time, and have been fighting against it

    what we want are reasonable, intelligent, educated officers who understand the constitution and have a personal willingness to disobey illegal orders

  • http://lemonparty.org PsychedelicSam

    Surprise surprise. Proof that cops are idiotic beyond description. Pigs rolling around in their own excrement and tracking it all over the world, leeching off of decent hard working people. Like ticks.

  • mordisco

    The not best and the not so bright.

  • Richard Gearon

    In 1967 I applied for a job as a cop in a small rural PD in California’s Central Valley. There were three persons on my oral exam; the Chief of the PD I was hoping to get on, a Captain from a neighboring rural PD and a CHP sergeant. The first two voted to fail me. The Captain wasn’t very smart, but he was a lot smarter than the Chief, who didn’t know what “forfeited the bail” (on a ticket) meant.

  • Philip Schuster

    Is this true of all municipal police departments or are there exceptions to the rule? I haven’t heard that all police departments were required to use this standard of eliminating high scoring applicants.

    • kwkr

      does it really matter if it is All? Any at all is disgusting

      • rebeccagavin

        Yes it matters, when the author makes it sound like a common practice using only that one example.

  • rebeccagavin

    Is there even one iota of evidence that this policy is even utilized by any other police force in the country, besides New London, CT? What a specious pile of crap…and I am a strong Liberal. But baseless claims like this, disparaging an entire group of people, are fodder for Right Wing publications. I don’t find this thoughtful or thought provoking. I find it intellectually lazy and something that our side should avoid like the plague.

    • kwkr

      Did you bother to read the article?? Or just look at the pictures. Seems you would be just the applicant their looking for. The Judge, Dorsey ADMITTED this policy was a proven fact. A FEDERAL judge at that. The fact that people like you feel this neither thoughtful or thought provoking is why this kind of policy can even be in ONE department which is one too many.

      • rebeccagavin

        A proven fact in one city. But the article makes it sound like it is universal or common. That is not a rational or logical transition. There is nothing wrong with people having average IQs. Average isn’t stupid. It is elitist to assume that a few IQ points makes for a better person. It doesn’t. It would be thought provoking if the author could show that this policy is widespread….But one example does not a trend make. And if you think it does, maybe you need to brush up on your critical thinking skills before you disparage other people YOUR IQ may be average. Have you ever had it tested? There is no shame in having an average IQ, though mine tests a little less than 2 standard deviations above the norm. What the ruling says is that above average intelligence is not a protected class and if an employer finds that turnover is lower when higher IQ people are not hired, the judge found that to be perfectly legal.

        • imokyrok

          It sure does explain a lot about what we see from your countries police force and it’s daily incidence of brutality. There is nothing wrong with having an average IQ if one is doing an average job. However in most countries I’d like to think we’d aim higher for at least some recruits to a job that impacts the welfare of the citizen to that extent.

          • rebeccagavin

            First of all, this country does not have just one police force. There are as many police forces as there are states, counties, municipalities, etc. Second, higher IQ does not translate, necessarily, to a better cop. Some people are high in analytical thinking, but not so great in dealing with people. For someone who is geared towards their own ends, a higher IQ may make it easier for them to figure out how to work the system. My point was that you cannot take one example, of one lawsuit, 14 years ago, by a disgruntled, wannabe cop, and extrapolate that to the idea that police departments go out of their way to hire dumb people. It would be nice to have an easy answer as to why this horrific problem is occurring so frequently. However, just like with anything else, taking lazy correlation as causation lines of non-reasoning only obscures the picture and takes us further away from identifying the REAL issues. There is no way that one law suit can explain the entirety of this problem. You get some studies that link average IQ to higher police brutality and/or higher IQ to lower police brutality, then you might be getting somewhere.

          • bringerofchill

            You realize that if a score of 33 equaled an IQ of 125, that a score of 20 would likely equal a score below 100, so below that of an average IQ?

          • rebeccagavin

            An average iq is anywhere between one standard deviation under 100 and one standard deviation over 100 – as mentioned earlier 84 -116.

          • Ahmed Abdalla

            Where did you study statistics because you clearly have no idea what you’re talking about. “For a data set, the terms arithmetic mean, mathematical expectation, and average are used synonymously to refer to a central value of a discrete set of numbers: specifically, the sum of the values divided by the number of values. ” 100 is the mean or average. How could the average be one standard deviation from itself. That would be 68.27 percent of the data set which is far greater than average. For a disputer of bullshit you seam to spout a lot of it.

          • Andy Barrette

            Ahmed, I have no trouble understanding what she meant. You may be a perfect candidate for the police force.

          • Richard Forte

            it’s not a very unusual practice. Military brass will tell you privately they want the enlisted men to be smart enough to do their jobs but no smarter

        • Richard Forte

          I think your analysis is valid but you shouldn’t have mentioned your loft IQ. It reminds me of when feminists made a point of saying they weren’t homely

  • Sargent Pepper

    that explains a lot

  • Bibliophile

    I know some very intelligent cops, kind men, so this is surprising, but I have heard it…. They were probably bright enough to hide their IQ while testing…..

  • Jay Hale

    I’d loooooove to know what the cutoff is…”gifted”? Or is being anywhere over triple-digits bad?

    • rebeccagavin

      Since average can range from 84-116, I think that triple digits goes without saying.

      • slimelaws

        The test scores this department was hiring equated to an IQ of about 104. At best.
        The folks involved in the lawsuit stated very plainly that they did not hire smarter candidates because “Retention rates suffered among officers with higher test scores.”
        This was a lawsuit in one spot in the country, but it has been cited by departments across the country. Sort of a precedent.
        In any case, you needn’t worry. Clearly, you are not and have not tried to join the police department in your town,or I suspect that you might score a bit too highly on the test, and then you’d be suing too.
        Now we just need to help you find out what a lot of us have; That our IQs did not protect us from being naive, and having that taken advantage of, by some bad guys dressed up as heroes…..

        • rebeccagavin

          Nicely put. But the fact that I don’t like hyperbolic arguments built on flimsy evidence does not mean that I am naive about the police. However, the problems in law enforcement in this country need to be thoroughly studied. Making assumptions based on correlation is not going to solve the problem. Having an average IQ does not make a person less moral, or more prone to corruption. Neither does a high IQ make a person superior. There is much more to the story than simply IQ and poking fun and insinuating that the problem is that all cops are dumb is simply not helpful.

          • slimelaws

            I don’t think the point is so much that guys with this IQ are gonna be inherently worse. It’s the fact that our leaders think they are, and overtly plan our police forces to be corruptible.
            I have interviewed a lot of people surrounding police corruption( I became sort of an activist after I got a DWI walking from the store to the hotel I was staying in so I could drink with my buddies and NOT drive) and so far, the universal truth about good cops is; They either move on to a small town police organization that is still honest, or they quit.
            Out here in Albuquerque, the cops all said they joined wanting to help society, and learned really quickly that they were gonna be expected to be criminals for a corrupt set of politicians, who were using the APD to put the homeless in jail, steal money from the public, whatever.
            The politicians don’t wanna disappoint you by raising your taxes. You’d vote for the other guy. So they run short on funds, leave your taxes alone, and pull you over every chance they get and write you tickets for bullshyt “Crimes”
            The honest guys don’t want any part of it.
            The guys who are willing to stay, once disillusioned? Those are guys who were bouncing the door at the local skin bar. Big, slow, angry tough guy types, who end up getting paid waaaaay more than the $9 an hour they deserve, given their skill set. The results are demonstrably disastrous.
            Thing is, the politicians(mayors, judges, DAs, you know, politicians) can’t accuse them of crimes, fire them, prosecute them when they kill some guy by shooting him in the back( You may have heard of James Boyd. There were 42 cops on scene, and they called a green kid, off duty, to come and bring his $3,000-$4,000 rifle to shoot him while he was trying to lie down for them). If they indict these guys, these guys will scream”The Politicians made me do it!! They make us do all kinds of illegal stuff!” and then can you imagine where we’d be?
            Dumber people are more easily led, but that may be a specious argument. Let’s just theorize that the guys who were hired were dumb enough not to be getting anywhere in their lives before they found the police force…..
            The smarter guys were probably already doing okay elsewhere……

  • Eugene Kiedrowski

    It was easy to staff the Third Reich. It is still easy.

  • jonquilofmars

    I’m so not surprised to read this.

  • Diane Phillipa

    Only knuckle draggers can apply and it explains so much of bad police behaviour.

  • Michael Maree

    So if I don’t hire a Mexican guy, it’s not discrimination as long as I “hold all to this same standard, and thus reject all applicants who are Mexican.” Good to know.

  • A saddened patriot

    This explains so much.
    I was worried about the state our police forces are in, now I just wonder if they understand the laws they’re supposed to be enforcing.

  • Andy Barrette

    I’ve figured that the average IQ of police officers was below the national average, but I didn’t know it was on purpose.