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T's and Blues

by Ethan Thompson

[commentary by Brian Dean]

Drugs are a pretty broad topic, but there are typical names and ideas that present themselves when someone mentions them. I wanted to find something a little more unorthodox and outside the box, and in my search I stumbled upon the program titled “T’s and Blues”. The call number is 78052 DCT. As soon as the documentary starts, you are immediately shown and told a person’s opinion on T’s and Blues, a heroin substitute. I was immediately intrigued by the man’s devastating description of the drug, so I chose to use the 00:47 to 06:26 minutes mark for my clip. Not only is the drug’s effects described in explicit detail, but there are actual shots of injection and preparation of the drug. During the intro in this clip, it is explained that the drug can be obtained with a prescription from a pharmacy. The law enforcement knows that the drug is a problem akin to heroin, but there simply haven’t been any criminal charges that can warrant large scale action against it. According to the statistics cited in the clip, over 30,000 prescriptions were written at the Mohawk clinic, and junkies could waltz in get exactly what they needed, all the way down to the preparation materials. The negative reputation of the drug was emphasized made immediately transparent, yet I found it interesting that I had never heard anything of this drug before.

T's and Blues: The Prescription Phenomenon

A heroin substitute is handed out like candy from Chicago pharmacies.

from T's and Blues (1978)
Creator: WLS-TV
Distributor: Peabody Archive
Posted by Ethan Thompson
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