I can't see them ever going soft on apostates. The whole cult is built on CONTROL.
They have to create a barrier (shunning) between the 'apostate' and the loyal sheep.
That barrier can only be enforced by individuals being DA'd or DF'd.
I think the only reason I got away with it was because I took control of the situation.
Additionally, my mother, brother and sister have never been in the cult and I made it clear that they were very interested to observe how 'true Christians' treat a member who no longer believes their teachings.
The elders are in a difficult position.
They need to control the congregation from my influence, while being under the gaze of my non-believing family.