According to some atheists on this forum, religion should not have ANY decree on murder or killing under any circumstances, as this proscribes capital punishment and/or provides justification for killing. Some also disagree with the notion of forgiveness/compensation of crime as an alternative to punishment, while agreeing that prisons are full of innocent but convicted people. However, if we look at societies under atheist rulers, they are replete with murder and torture. So, in the absence of scriptures and religion, what is the atheists inspiration for murder? What is the "rational" approach to punishment?