People do not despise a thief if he steals to satisfy himself when he is starving. Yet when he is found, he must restore sevenfold (Proverbs 6:30-31)
Justice must have little to do with passion. We may pity the poor thief for his poverty, but we must hold him accountable for his actions. To do otherwise is to dishonor both man and God. For God has said, "You shall not steal." Justice calls for, not only restitution, but multiplied restitution. The violator must be punished. The best punishment therefore is multiplied restitution. Incarceration is a means of punishment, but does little with regard to discipline and restitution. Even though our society may not be able to adjust to a penalty of restitution, we can instill it in our homes with our children. If an infraction must be remedied seven times, violating those infractions will be greatly discouraged and diminished. This may be contrary to societies way of thinking, but not to the thinking of God's Word. I would rather trust the Proverbs of the Bible than the reasoning of modern man.