Po-tay-to, po-tah-to. Net effect is that a thief is killed, with no sanction on the person who killed him. Sounds like capital punishment for theft to me, for all practical purposes.
I used to think like that but now I think that it is an error. There is the criminal law, the civil law and then there is acceptable behaviour.
1. The criminal law looks at everything in an even-handed and clinical manner and is the public face of authority.
2. The civil law is broader and laxer in what it considers and works on a balance of probabilities. It isd as if a reasonable man were looking at the situation.
3. Acceptable behaviour understands that human behaviour cannot be written down and actions on the spur of the moment or because it seemed a good idea at the time are understandable. This standard is very broad. It is possible for actions to fall into either or neither of the above categories.
Killing a person whose crime does not attract the death penalty where your life or the lives of others were not in danger, may seem severe but it is what happens - people get upset, they don't think straight, they are annoyed, they do the first thing that enters their head. This is rarely a crime. Others look at it and say, "Yes, I can see why he did that."
On the other hand there is the case of the able person who does not give assistance to the person in mortal danger - he commits (in mist countries) no crime if he allows the other to die.
I think that is little point trying to impose your views do didactically on someone - the spectrum of human morality is broad. There are obvious exceptions but the line between them is inherently vague.
Wow an eloquent version of what rambles round in my head. That pretty much sums up my postion.
Shooting someone for stealing from you, I think the response may be along the extreme line of the acceptable spectrum of responses to the transgression.
For those who say theft is not a capital offense, neither is child rape. However, would you jail someone for shooting someone he caught in the act of raping his six year old boy? I would never ever consider putting that guy in jail for shooting his childs rapist in the heat of the moment. I think almost any reasonable man would shoot the rapist of his child. I think at the absolute extreme of acceptable human behavior is shooting the guy for stealing his car. Being stolen from creates a very visceral emotional response, as such you should probably avoid stealing from people or you might get your ass shot.
(I am not equating stealing a stereo to child rape, only saying that reasonable human response is a spectrum that does not always line up with judicial process)