PORTLAND – “There Ought to Be A Law,” a documentary film about a Maine woman who became a gun control activist after her teenage son’s suicide, will be shown Monday, Jan. 29, at the University of Southern Maine.

Former State Sen. Michael Brennan, now a policy associate with the Institute for Child and Family Policy in USM’s Muskie School of Public Service, will moderate a discussion with state legislators and activists following the hourlong film.

“There Ought to Be A Law” follows Cathy Crowley of Lewiston in the months after her 18-year-old son bought a shotgun at Wal-Mart and killed himself.

Maine law states that a person must be 21 to buy a handgun, 18 to buy a shotgun. Crowley couldn’t understand how anyone under 21 could buy a shotgun without a waiting period – and set out to change that.

She sat at her kitchen table for 10 hours and wrote to every single lawmaker in the state legislative directory. Several lawmakers agreed to sponsor a bill that would require a waiting period before young people could buy guns.

The film shows how the bill at first seemed likely to sail through the Maine Legislature but then ran into opposition from the state’s gun lobby. Two years in the making, “There Ought to Be A Law” gives viewers a behind-the-scenes look at how the Maine Legislature operates and how average people can get involved in the process.

The film was co-produced by Anita Clearfield and Geoffrey Leighton of Durham and Shoshana Hoose of Portland. It will be shown at 7 p.m. in Gerald E. Talbot Lecture Hall (formerly Luther Bonney Auditorium) in Luther Bonney Hall. Admission is free. The public is invited.

For more information, go online to www.thereought2bealaw.com or call (207) 751-4848.