Last week, law enforcement officials outside Land Shark Stadium rolled out a display of equipment to protect Miami’s postseason football games: the Orange Bowl, Pro Bowl and Super Bowl No. 44. The message was not subtle: anyone, terrorist or otherwise, plotting an attack on any of these high-profile events had best think again. A swath of the stadium parking lot was filled with armored SWAT vehicles, bomb-handling robots, mobile command posts, explosive-sniffing dogs, even a large X-ray device used by Homeland Security to screen ocean-going shipping containers.

At the same time, at major sports events across the nation attendees are raising the voices about too much security with rules that often outlaw carry-ins that some say encourages more spending with in-stadium vendors.

The federal coordinator in Miami this year is the Coast Guard Rear Admiral, who commands the district based in the city. The Super Bowl, to be played this year on February 7, is annually designated a special security event requiring ramped-up protection. This year, officials added the January 5 Orange Bowl and January 31 Pro Bowl because they are being played at the same venue, as well as the concerts, parades, parties, and other happenings that go along with games.

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