I think the article itself disproves the thesis that Mistral is patently hateable— in fact the piece eased my own distaste for it. I am plenty old enough to remember a time before Comic Sans and Papyrus when Mistral was the only typeface to loathe.
One point that I think is key is that it was one of the few extant fonts, let alone ones that business owners had access to, that would approximate handwriting or graffiti. It's a big reason Comic Sans persists, and presumably why sites like Creative Market are flooded with handwritten custom typefaces. I find it hard to hate on small business owners who wanted their signs or truck stickers to be less brutalist. A world where an otherwise solid piece of art like Straight Outta Compton can be packaged in crap design is a more fun world, anyway.