I went to the 2008 Democratic Convention in Denver and was able to use one of the BlueNC credentials which gave me access to the secured perimeter around the Pepsi Center. I can say without a doubt that without these credentials, I would have never gotten close to anything important so I don't see why Charlotte has to "out thug" Denver. I saw plenty of demonstrations, even participated in a few. Except for one they were all peaceful and the police did their job.
The powers that be here in Charlotte want to give the police pretty much free reign to search whatever they please:
The ACLU is specifically worried about the prohibition of a number of items during the DNC, including backpacks and duffle bags if they are "carried with the intent to conceal weapons or other prohibited items."
I carried my backpack everywhere I went in Denver and the only time it was ever searched was when I was entering a secured area which I totally understand.