Author, educator and activist Heather McGhee recently visited Harriton High School to speak with students about The Sum of Us: How Racism Hurts Everyone - an updated version of her New York Times’ best-selling book of the same name, adapted for a younger audience.
The premise of The Sum of Us is that the United States has fallen behind other developed nations in areas like healthcare, education, economic equality and voting rights, among others, due to the way racism impacts American politics. Her position is that people generally see the world through a zero-sum lens, a game-theoretical view where in order for one person or group to gain, the other must lose. This winner-take-all mentality can lead white voters to reject voting for or supporting a policy that benefits groups of color, even when the policies would actually be of benefit to everyone.
Following McGhee’s discourse, students had the opportunity to ask the author questions about her life and work as well as have her sign copies of the book. For more information about McGhee and her work, visit her website here. To view a series of images from the program, click through below!