The story is important for a few reasons. First of all, people can underestimate hate. World War II hadn't been over for long before people began getting overly hopeful about what it meant for the world. The rosy glasses went on before the rubble was cleaned up. Also, authorities were allowing these fascist gatherings to occur under the guise of free speech. These were just words, they reasoned, and words can't hurt. However those words led to very real consequences like attacks on synagogues and people. Similarly, today, journalist Shane Bauer (writing for Mother Jones) has noted that police have not always been proactive in containing these antifa versus fascist actions — sometimes even arresting and pepper spraying nonviolent activists while leaving supremacist demonstrators alone. Finally, our relationship with violence is a funny thing. People were not happy about antifascist violence even then, Mr. Bray writes, but it was effective and the marginalized groups targeted by the antifa felt safer and more empowered because of it.