Occupied. Surrounded. Beaten. It was their place to be meek. To do what the smirking goons told them to do with a smile on their face. And yet they stand and they sing.
And once Bogie nods to the band (the most important gesture in the whole movie) the band jumps in, loud enough to drown out bellowing of the fascists.
It happened that, of all the gin joints in all the world, a little bar in the middle of nowhere was their battlefield, and when the moment came they stood up and were counted.
It was their place to be meek.
To knuckle under.
And yet the old, the weak, the compromised, they all stood up and sang.
Shill, strident, vituperative losers, every one of them.
My kind of people.