Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee signed a bill banning drag shows in public spaces Wednesday, becoming the first state in the country to restrict the popular form of expression. Lee also signed a bill banning gender-affirming health care for transgender youth.

The measure will likely force difficult decisions upon drag performers in Tennessee, prohibiting the performance of "adult cabaret entertainment" on public property or in locations where it can be viewed by minors. Such entertainment, according to the measure, includes "topless dancers, go-go dancers, exotic dancers, strippers, male or female impersonators, or similar entertainers."

Tennessee becomes the first state in the U.S. to officially criminalize drag performances, but with trans rights and drag shows drawing the ire of Republicans nationwide, several other states have proposed very similar measures.

The law goes into effect April 1, starting with making first-time violators eligible to be charged with a Class A misdemeanor, punishable by a $2,500 fine and up to a year in jail. Subsequent offenses will be classified as a Class E felony, carrying a maximum six-year prison sentence.

Supporters of the bill argue its intention to protect children from obscene visuals is a noble cause, while critics believe drag shows not to be explicit in nature, and raise the concern of police officers abusing the law in defense of their subjective biases.

Tennessee Senate Majority Leader Jack Johnson, who was among the group pushing the bill through the legislature, celebrated the signing on Twitter.

"The bill gives confidence to parents that they can take their kids to a public or private show and will not be blindsided by a sexualized performance," he wrote.

Gov. Lee also signed a bill Thursday banning healthcare providers from prescribing puberty blockers or hormones, and from performing gender-affirming surgeries for transgender minors. Tennessee becomes the eighth state in to enact such a law, and the fourth to do so this year.

The bill signings come amid a flurry of controversy for Lee, as pictures of him dressed in drag from his 1977 yearbook surfaced and were spread around Reddit and Twitter.

Lee responded to a reporter's questions about the picture with obscurity, neither confirming nor denying the picture was indeed him.

"What a ridiculous, ridiculous question that is," Lee told local news site the Tennessee Holler. "Conflating something like that to sexualized entertainment in front of children, which is a very serious subject."

According to the A.C.L.U. of Tennessee, drag performances in the state should still be allowed to go on, as the language of the new law remains too narrow to prohibit something protected by the First Amendment, which they argue drag performances are.

"We are disappointed that Governor Lee chose to sign a bill that politicians intended to censor drag performances," said ACLU of Tennessee legal director Stella Yarbrough. "However, I want to be abundantly clear: the law that was just signed does not make it illegal to perform in drag in Tennessee. The law bans obscene performances, and drag performances are not inherently obscene."