Nobody has a problem with Milestone comics, Eartha Kitt Catwoman, and IIRC Uhura was applauded and seen as significant for the time of her debut
Nowadays, they'd probably be seen as virtue signaling regardless of the quality they hold.
Even back then there was an attempt for diversity, as stereotypical as the likes of Apache Chief, Samurai,and El Dorado were, the people in charge of Superfriends genuinely added them for positive representation.
John Stewart is no one's favorite Lantern for those who read the comics but he was people's only Lantern when the DCAU used him over Hal or Kyle and it worked out fine.
Cut to modern times and now we have people shitting their pants over the thought of a new minority character and either overhyping them or immediately thinking they are the cancer in comics.
I think it depends on the quality of the character.
Jessica Cruz, Simon Baz, Midnighter, Apollo, Kamala (granted she was pushed too hard with desperate attempts to capture lightning twice in a bottle), Robbie Reyes, Kenan Kong, and Jaime Reyes are examples of good characters done right.
They only egregious examples I can think of are America Chavez and Riri (maybe Whor but its mostly just because of one page), the rest are either inoffensive at worst or actually good.
Regarding legacies, they've been around since the beginning
Thunderstrike, Zatanna, Wally West, Rhodes, Danny Ketch, etc