Fr. James Schall, S.J., writing today at The Catholic Thing, explains the difference between compassion based on our emotions, and compassion based on reason. His essay is entitled: "On Compassion," and can be read in its entirety by clicking HERE.
The essay is especially relevant in today's culture where those who make poor choices have chosen to see themselves as victims of those in society who still cling to natural law, social order, or anything that smacks of virtue. He graphically portrays the thought process of those who would "do something against the natural order of (their) being," but refuse to suffer for it.
Here's the quote:
I wanted to re-order the world so that my suffering is blamed, not on me, but on a disordered world. I am a “victim.” Sympathize with me. What compassion can do, quite subtly, is to shift our intellectual attention from what is going on, from the disordered cause to the natural sufferings that follow. I will argue and then try to convince others, invoking compassion, that my suffering is caused, not by my disordered choices and acts. It is caused by the claim that any acts, as such, are immoral.