"There should be some sort of exam before being allowed on a jury."
It's an interesting point.
Legal experts have traditionally championed the system whereby jurors are selected entirely at random from the eligible population,with no criteria being used,other than(currently - there has been talk of abolishing the upper age limit)three simple qualifying factors. Prospective jurors must be:-
- Aged between 18 and 70
- Registered on a parliamentary or local government electoral roll
- Have been resident in the UK, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man for at least five consecutive years since the age of 13.
Judges, lawyers, politicians, doctors and members of the clergy used to be exempted from jury service, but that's no longer the case.
You are disqualified from jury service if you have been sentenced for a criminal offence, or you are on bail, or if you have certain mental illnesses.
On balance I think that I'm in favour of the random selection system, even if it does mean that some jurors may be less bright than others. I don't think that a person's ability to weigh evidence is compromised, just because he or she may have a lower IQ than the next juror along.