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Being a lawyer can be a very rewarding career. There are many areas: criminal, corporate, tax, etc. and two 'types' of legal practice 1) litigation and 2) transactional.
The attorneys you are thinking of are likely public defenders. This practice is only one fraction of the legal world.
Public defenders are a vital part of the adversarial system. Imagine if you were in the wrong place at the wrong time and went straight to jail. Public defenders and criminal defense attorneys make prosecutors prove that the defendant committed all elements of the crime.
Lawyers never defend or justify unlawful action. Lawyers are there to make sure the all elements of a crime are proven, as required by law. This is meant to protect the innocent from being unjustly punished. Of course, the system is not perfect and sometimes guilty people avoid punishment. But the spirit of the legal system is to enforce a system of rules based on a society's values.
Short answer - No, law can be a very rewarding job. Other than public defenders, lawyers are generally not forced to defend guilty people.