What do you think of Abraham Lincoln and his relevance to current racial tensions?

In an attempt to shame BLM, there have been many reports of statues of Lincoln defaced or slanderous remarks made by the movement.

Well it turns other that most of these claims are fabricated using photoshop or falsely attributing damage to the protesters.
Photoshopped image
Photoshopped image
Original picture
Original picture
But this raises an interesting point: what kind of individual was Lincoln and should we judge people by our modern sensibilities or those at the time. I've seen many "lost causers" quote from Lincoln where he said that he was against African Americans acquiring racial equality in the US but you know what they say: context matters. In the mid 1850s, most people in the US were white supremacists and if he was openly anti-racist he wouldn't have been elected to any office where he would be able to make a difference for the slaves in the first place. He also entertained the idea that instead of becoming Americans, the freed slaves should be sent off to a colony in Africa or the Caribbean. However, he was not alone in thinking this way and a large portion of the African American population supported this idea well into the Civil Rights Movement 100 years on because they felt that they had no place in America (and I can't say I blame them for feeling that way).Now as far as I know, Lincoln didn't leave any kind of authenticated written record about how he truly felt about racial equality so I'm not saying that he wasn't a racist, I'm just saying statements made during his campaign trail can't be trusted at face value.
But what we can know with a much greater degree of certainty is what motivated John Wilkes Booth (along with James Earl Ray) to commit the deeds that he became infamous for. And on top of the blatant forgery, this is what makes reactionary types who use MLK and Lincoln to shave the moment so despicable; people who wanted to see African Americans kept in their place killed them too.
Updates:
1 mo
One thing we should remember is that up until Lincolns' death, reconstruction was working and African Americans were being elected to political offices. Judge people by their actions first, their words second.
What do you think of Abraham Lincoln and his relevance to current racial tensions?
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